Rothschild's Koch Connection Pays Off in Pursuit of Time Inc


Meredith Corp., a magazine publisher and broadcast company, will acquire Time a deal totaling $2.8 billion, the company announced in a statement Sunday.

Meredith is backed by $650 million from Koch Equity Development, the investment arm of Koch Industries. Fears have been raised that the source of the funding could be of a political interest, however Meredith claims that there will be no seat on the board as a result of the funding and that editorial will remain out of reach of influence.

Meredith has attempted to purchase Time before in 2013, but that was unsuccessful.

"We are creating a premier media company serving almost 200 million American consumers across industry-leading digital, television, print, video, mobile, and social platforms positioned for growth", said Meredith Corporation Chairman and CEO Stephen M. Lacy. On Friday, Time closed at $16.90 in trading on the New York Stock Exchange.

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The other Time brands have also attempted to delve into video and digital, but like SI, haven't been caught on. Meredith approached Time again earlier this year, but those discussions also stalled when Meredith reportedly failed to secure enough bank financing for the acquisition. The Journal reported that Iowa-based Meredith has agreed to pay $18.50 a share in cash - a 46% premium from Time's stock at the time acquisition talks were first reported on November 15.

The Des Moines, Iowa-based company said in the statement that the all-cash deal had been approved by both firms' boards of directors and is expected to close in the first quarter in 2018. Additionally, Meredith anticipates generating cost synergies of $400 million to $500 million in the first full two years of operation.

Meredith brings with it a magazine portfolio that includes Better Homes & Gardens, Family Circle, allrecipes and Shape, while Time Inc. owns properties including Time, Sports Illustrated, People, Fortune and Entertainment Weekly.