The Huffington Post today announced that it has acquired a majority stake in the New York Times Company.
The price of the acquisition was not disclosed, but is believed to have been facilitated with the help of Mexican billionaire Carlos Slim, a major investor in the company. Slim will maintain a minority ownership stake, and under the deal obtained ownership of the physical assets of the group, including outright ownership of radio station WQXR-FM.
Huffington Post founder Arianna Huffington said in a statement that the New York Times would cease print publication on Friday, after which it would become an internet only publication. A decision has not been made about the future of the New England Media Group, (which includes The Boston Globe) but it is believed that the group will be shut down, and the Boston.com web portal folded into a new Boston local site on HuffingtonPost.com. Successful blog come information portal About.com would be folded into a new service tentatively called “The Huffington Wiki.”
“This is an important milestone in the history on online journalism” said Huffington. “The New York Times has a long future ahead of it, and we look forward to the challenge of making this company great again, without the burden of newsprint.”
Final job cuts for the group have yet to be finalized, but Huffington assured any employee laid off that they would be welcomed warmly if they applied for unpaid blogging positions at either the NYTimes.com or HuffingtonPost.com sites.