An agreement which will give Rupert Murdoch his longtime amibition – to own America’s number one financial daily, the Wall Street Journal – is now believed to be imminent.
After several days of closed-door meetings the two companies have, it is reported, agreed in principle on a way of concluding a deal. While there are still some “open items”, the agreement paves the way for the sale of Dow Jones, the company that publishes the Wall Street Journal, to Rupert Murdoch for around the $5,000 million he offered nearly a month ago.
It is all now up to the Bancroft Family which has owned controlling chares in the company for the past 100 years, and some of whose members still privately express doubts about the deal.
These final talks, it is reported, have included promises by News Corp to protect the ‘editorial independence’of the Wall Street Journal which has been among the main stumbling blocks
There are still some skeptics – including some who doubt the wisdom of Murdoch using the WSJ as a basis for a new financial and business news channel on American television,
Norman Pearlstine, a former editor of the WSJ and later of Time Inc, was quoted at an editors’ conference this week suggesting that Murdoch was ‘certifiably insane’if he pursues the idea. Others thought however he was just being “crazy as a fox”.
News that an agreement between Dow Jones and Rupert Murdoch is imminent has sent shares in Dow Jones soaring on Wall Street.