Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff buys Time Magazine for $190 million
Benioff and his wife are buying Time Magazine from Meredith Corp, deal expected to close in a month
Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff and his wife Lynne Benioff are buying Time Magazine for $190 million from Meredith Corp. The Wall Street Journal first reported the sale, which is expected to close in the next 30 days.
The development was announced to Time staffers by its editor in chief Edward Felsenthal, who told employees on Sunday night that “Benioffs will hold Time as a family investment.”
"It will have no connection to Salesforce, the software company Marc founded in 1999," Felsenthal said in media reports. "While they will not be operators of the business, we are extremely fortunate to have Marc and Lynne's guidance and mentorship as we set out to build a new company."
This is not the first time that a tech CEO is buying a prestigious print publication. Jeff Bezos had purchased The Washington Post for $250 million nearly five years ago. The Post purchase was separate from Bezos's role as CEO as Amazon. Now, Benioff is promising a similar arrangement with Time.
Benioff said in an email to CNN, "Lynne and I will take on no operational responsibility for Time, and look only to be the stewards of this historic and iconic brand."
Meredith bought Time magazine and the rest of Time Inc. last November. The company promptly said it would sell some titles that were not a great fit with its existing titles, including Time. Meredith confirmed the sale plans back in March. It had hoped to strike a deal within a couple of months, but the process took much longer than expected, say reports.
Meredith is also working on selling three other former Time Inc. titles: Fortune, Money, and Sports Illustrated. A Meredith spokeswoman said in media reports that deals for the other three titles are expected to be announced in the "near future."
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