] American Media Inc. is actively seeking to sell the National Enquirer, according to three people familiar with the process, which spoke on anonymity terms, because they had no right to speak publicly.
The sale decision came after the hedge fund manager of the American media control firm became "disgusting" with the reporting tactic of the Enquirer, according to one of these people.
American media were under intense pressure because of Enquirer's attempts to tilt the 2016 presidential election in favor of Donald Trump, who is a longtime friend of President and CEO of American Media, David Packer. Packer and his tabloids in the supermarket were also drawn in recent months in an extremely public attitude with Jeff Bezos, who also owns The Washington Post.
In August, both AMI and its two executives complete an agreement on non-prosecution. with federal investigators, the board of directors of the company began to look for ways to unload the boutique business, "because they no longer wanted to deal with such troubles," another person said.
The company also faced financial difficulties, as an attempt to refinance more than $ 400 million in debt earlier this year, and the Enquirer turnover continued to decline, with wider trends in newsstands. The paper sold an average of 516,000 copies for issue in 2014, but this figure fell to 218 thousand in December, according to data gathered by the Alliance for proven media. at the border, "said Picker in 2016 at Toronto Star. Packer has been managing financial difficulties for the company, expanding the portfolio of American Media in recent years, buying magazines such as Us Weekly and In Touch. He also relied on support from Anthony Melchior, who controls the $ 4bn hedge fund Chatham Asset Management, which owns 80 percent of the parent company Enquirer.
The decision to sell tabloid has partly led to the pressure that Melchiorr used, according to two people familiar with the discussions of people. He partially motivated the financial difficulties of the boutique business, but also his aversion to the tactic of the Enquirer. Representative Chatham declined to comment, and Melchiorre did not respond to the call to ask for a comment
tabloid long known for its questionable methods; in 1977 on its cover photo of Elvis Presley's corpse was published and about 7 million copies were sold. In 2007, perhaps in his highest journalistic achievement, she broke the news of the ex-marital affair of presidential candidate John Edwards with Riel Hunter, partly because his journalists hid in the bushes to gather evidence.
Seven sold the paper to Packer in 1999. Tabulaid represents the corner of the media landscape, which is practically ignored by the coastal elites, and has long endorsed the positive coverage of Donald Trump, as well as other celebrities who are known within the editorial Enquirer as "Friends of the Packer.
And Trump returned praise. One time he wrote that Packer must run the Time magazine; He also said that the Enquirer had won the Pulitzer Prize.
But the Enquirer's political coverage of Trump during the 2016 elections put the tabloid at a much higher degree, and led to legal danger.
removes the Enquirer from the Pecker control and puts some separation between the tabloid and the recent scandals that partly arise from the close relationship between Pecker and Trump.
Last year, American Media acknowledged that she had paid $ 150,000 to former Playboy model Karen McDougall, who claimed that the case of Trump was to prevent her claim "from affecting the election." Admission came as federal prosecutors announced they would not pursue the company for its role in the scheme in favor of Trump in the presidential race.
In an agreement, AMI said that it would cooperate with prosecutors. The agreement, which was signed in September, covered Packer and the chief officer of the content company, Dylan Govar, according to people familiar with her.
Just as in August prosecutors' agreements were finalized, the AMI council agreed to investigate
Then, in January, Packer and Enkwirer devoted a cover and 12 pages of their edition on January 28, exposing Bezos's novel Lauren Sanchez, former host of Fox, "Yes You think you can dance. " 19659020] Bezos later wrote a blog post accusing the AMI of trying to blackmail him, threatening to publish explicit billionaire photos if he had not publicly stated that he had no reason to suppose that the disclosure of the Enquirer was politically motivated. The story of Bezos helped to seal the fate of the Enquirer, said one man who informed about his thinking.
"Thrump Trump was a problem, and [Melchiorre] was really disgusting with Bezos's message," the man said. Reporting also threatened to resume legal review of the company. The federal prosecutors reviewed the charges made by Bezosom to determine whether the US media allegedly violated the terms of the nonprokuratric agreement, according to people familiar with this issue.
Pecker writes: "Our board has been keen on focusing on the popularity of our celebrity glossy, adolescent and active lifestyle brands by developing new and reliable platforms. . . now deliver significant income. Because of this, we feel that future opportunities with tabloids may be most exploited by other property. "
American media also investigate the sale of two other tabloids – the Globe and the National Examiner. But Enquirer is the center of the meeting and is the main name that brought both American media and Packer into legal troubles.
Bezos Security Consultant, Gavin De Becker, claims that in a Daily Beast opinion Last month, AMI "is entering a league with a foreign state that is actively struggling to harm US citizens and companies, including the owner of the Washington Post."
A security consultant said that the Saudi government "intends to harm Jeff Bezos since last October, when Post began to relentlessly cover" the murder of editor Jemal. "Hashoggi in Istanbul, where De Becker accused the Enquirer of" tried to strengthen the American citizen whose leadership the country wanted to harm, compromise and force compel. "The company said that the sole source of information on an extra-marital affair was Michael Sanchez, brother of Loren.
A Saudi official said that the government did not succeed of the Bezos phone, and played no role in the Enquirer report of the founder of Amazon.
The network of accusations surrounding Bezos's story also falls on Trump's administration, De Becker argued that the Enquirer "became the law enforcement agency of the presidential campaign and the Trump presidency" for example, paying McDougal, and then not publishing his story.
One of the people familiar with the Enquirer Sales Talks said that the largest AMI investors became very uncomfortable in their tabloid investments, which was involved in efforts to idtrymku presidential administration and elections.
"The president is friends with Peker and is trying to help him, and Packer does everything that can help the president," said the man. "It can be awkward."