OLD Media Moves

Preserving Forbes legacy with an online focus

November 10, 2013

Posted by Chris Roush

Christine Haughney of The New York Times writes for Monday’s paper about the digtal focus at business magazine Forbes.

Haughney writes, “In the summer of 2010, the Forbes family started talking with Mr. Perlis about taking over as chief executive. By the time he started, Forbes had sold one of its most symbolic assets — its Fifth Avenue headquarters — to New York University for $65 million.

“Some industry observers have noted that Mr. Perlis’s efforts are intended to position Forbes to be sold, but Mr. Perlis stressed that Forbes is not for sale and that he has received no ‘undue pressure’ from Elevation Partners to sell the company. (Bret Pearlman, an Elevation Partners co-founder, said in a statement that the company is ‘extremely pleased’ with Mr. Perlis’s performance.)

“Mr. Perlis noted that the two Elevation Partners board members who sit on Forbes’s board are ‘religious’ about attending board meetings and staying involved. Still, ‘I wouldn’t rule out a transaction at some point,’ he said. ‘Elevation is in the business of being an investor.’

“That’s exactly what critics of Forbes’s business approach fear. Simon O. Sinek, a leadership and management consultant, who several years ago declined to include Forbes as a model in his book ‘Start With Why,’ said the brand had become too diminished. ‘The fact that people find their business model appealing doesn’t mean necessarily it’s the right business model for the long term,’ he said.”

Read more here.

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