Jeff Bezos bought the Washington Post as a financial investment, in hopes of helping the newspaper to recover from financial problems. Due to the popularity of online news, mergers, and bankruptcies in the news industry, the Post began to struggle. The dynamic climate in the news industry was one that the family who owned the Post, the Grahams, considered risky to the overall success of the newspaper, in spite of its continued profitability.Continue Reading
Bezos bought the company with the intention of taking it private, meaning there would be no need to report earnings or submit to investors' demands. This offered an opportunity to make potentially risky changes to the newspaper without scrutiny. Bezos came in with the intent of helping the paper recover its print circulation, since its digital readership has continued to flourish.
Bezos was chosen by the family who owned the paper, as well as the newspaper's board and an investment firm. He successfully created Amazon, which has continued to flourish by adapting to a changing market. The decision to allow Bezos to take over may have also stemmed from a friendship between Bezos and the owner of the Post, as well as the advisory relationship the two shared for years.Learn more about Managing a Business