Monday, May 11, 2009
The financial free-fall of the “Paper of Record” - The New York Times Co. (NYTC) - could significantly impact the Boston sports media and it has nothing to do with the Globe. NYTC is not going to diminish its main attraction, the Sports Section, or one of their most prized assets – boston.com (if you are reading this, you probably don’t buy the newspaper like most). But NYTC is selling their stake in New England Sports Ventures, LLC which owns the Boston Red Sox, NESN, etc.
The most likely person to purchase the NYTC’s 17.7% is the love sick Principal Owner, John Henry. He has already expressed interest, even going as far as to taking on the corpse known as the Boston Globe but then back tracking on the Globe. (If Henry wanted to really control Sox spin, he could buy Entercom – the parent of WEEI. The publicly traded company’s market capitalization was recently a bit more than Dice-K’s posting fee that was used to buy some ass warming stadium toilets.) Plus, Henry probably has the right to match any offer as part of the NESV, LLC agreement. As long as the bidding is not outrageous or a strategic partner does not emerge, we will get the status quo. Given the economy, it seems unlikely a billionaire goes wild but one company may have the synergies and pockets that could get Henry to back down.