Meredith Corp. has flipped another former Time Inc. property for the substantial sum of $150 million in cash.
The 70-year-old Fortune magazine and its related events assets have been bought by Chatchaval Jiaravanon, who owns the Thai conglomerate Charoen
Pokphand Group, which has some media and telecom properties, but mainly works in food, agriculture and retail. Meredith was said by sources early on to be seeking around $200 million for the magazine so the sale price to Jiaravanon marks a pretty steep negotiation. (Meredith was also said early on to be seeking somewhere in the neighborhood of $200 million for each of the four former Time Inc. titles it was selling, Time, Fortune, Money and Sports Illustrated, but the company said at one point it was aiming for a combined sale price of around $500 million).
A Meredith spokesman disputed industry speculation and numerous reports that the group had been seeking $200 million for Fortune, dismissing the number as “crazy.” He added that $150 million actually paid is “tremendous” and represents a 15x multiple of the brand’s earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization, a typical base to measure a company’s financial performance, which means the title is only bringing in $10 million in ebitda, right now. The spokesman also said Money is worth no more than $15 million as a brand, so anyone looking at that title, take note. One thing he didn’t dispute was the speculated price of Sports Illustrated and noted that Meredith is “extremely pleased” with the overall sales process so far. If everything is going as hoped, then expect to see Sports Illustrated sell for somewhere around the price of Fortune.
Read more starting at….’The Fortune sale is expected to close before the end of the year and it will be a’ at….
Meredith Sells Fortune Magazine to Thai Billionaire