Bancrofts want more money, editorial independence for WSJ
Andrew Ross Sorkin and Richard Perez-Pena of the New York Times write Friday that the Bancroft family that controls Dow Jones & Co. agreed to meet with News Corp. CEO Rupert Murdoch, but he’ll have to offer more money if he wants to acquire the owner of The Wall Street Journal.
Sorkin and Perez-Pena wrote, “According to a person close to the Bancrofts, not every family member has embraced the idea of talking to News Corporation, but a sufficient number have at least become open to the idea of pursuing some kind of dialogue with potential buyers. ‘But openness to talking does not necessarily mean openness to selling to News Corp.,’ this person said.
“According to people close to the family who declined to be identified because they are not authorized to speak, the family wants any bidder to meet two conditions. The first is more money, which means that any bidder, including Mr. Murdoch, would have to top his initial offer of $60 a share. Second, and perhaps more important, the family wants an independent overseer to guarantee what it called ‘the editorial independence and integrity of The Wall Street Journal.’
“‘For a lot of people, the main issue is hearing how real his promises are about integrity and independence,’ said the family member, who declined to be identified because this person was not authorized to speak for the family. ‘But price is also on the table.'”
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