Posted by: Jon Fine on September 10, 2009
Bloomberg LP has re-entered the bidding process for McGraw-Hill’s BusinessWeek, several sources familiar with the situation say, and is expected to meet with BusinessWeek executives to get more detailed information on the magazine’s operations early next week.
The news comes as a surprise, as Bloomberg previously passed on BusinessWeek, following much earlier talks. It is not clear what drew Bloomberg back into the process. Bloomberg’s Chief Content Officer, Norman Pearlstine, did not respond to several messages placed yesterday evening and today. A Bloomberg spokeswoman declined to comment, as did spokesmen from McGraw-Hill and BusinessWeek.
Bloomberg’s move comes in the very endgame of the process, with final bids for BusinessWeek coming due Tuesday, September 15.
At least ten companies, including Bloomberg, have participated in management presentations in which buyers receive more detailed information on the magazine’s operations. Other parties known to have taken part in those presentations are Bruce Wasserstein, ZelnickMedia, Morningstar founder Joe Mansueto, and private-equity firms OpenGate Capital, Platinum Equity, and Warburg Pincus.
One of the parties that attended a management presentation is a non-US based company, an insider familiar with the process says, though it’s not clear who that party is or whether that proposed bid is still active.
Wasserstein, OpenGate, and ZelnickMedia are still in the hunt for BusinessWeek, executives familiar with the situation say. Representatives for Wasserstein and ZelnickMedia declined to comment. An OpenGate spokeswoman confirmed that company remained in pursuit of BusinessWeek.
It’s uncertain how many of the others companies that took in management presentations on BusinessWeek remain active in the process as well, but I will update this post as I come across that information.
(Looks like the New York Post's Keith Kelly heard the same things I did . . . )
The media, entertainment and marketing worlds continue to shapeshift on a near-daily basis, as new forms arise and old assumptions erode. Where is it all going? No one really knows. But on this blog BusinessWeek’s media writers Tom Lowry and Ron Grover promise to provide ample helpings of scoop, provocation, and sharp analysis as they track and annotate this constantly changing terrain.