Time Warner is negotiating to sell much of its Time Inc. magazine division — including People, InStyle and Real Simple, Advertising Age reports, citing a report in another Time Inc. publication, Fortune. Fortune itself is reportedly not part of the potential sale package, nor are Time magazine or Sports Illustrated.
“Speculation immediately turned to the identity of the potential ‘serious buyer’ mentioned but not named in the article,” Ad Age reports. “BDT Capital is run by Byron Trott, a former Goldman Sachs executive known for a relationship with Warren Buffett, who has been making counterintuitive publishing investments lately in the form of newspaper acquisitions. Mr. Trott was a key player in Mr. Buffett’s investment in Goldman Sachs in 2008.”
So is Buffett trying to buy the magazines? No one is sure, but Ad Age notes that former Time Warner CEO Dick Parsons once told a town hall meeting that Buffett had urged him not to sell Time Inc. but added at the time: "If you do sell it, sell it to me.”
A rep for Buffett’s company Berkshire Hathaway did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Please click on the above link to read Ad Age’s in-depth report on where things stand with the possible sale.