Investors Continue Revolt Against NYT

Despite its best efforts, the New York Times Company continues to find itself plagued by wave after wave of investor complaints spurred on by the fact that the company's shares have fallen from near $50 to just under $16 since 2004.

First it was Morgan Stanley's audacious attempt to end the Times's dual-class share system which enables the radical leftist Sulzberger family to continue running the paper into the ground by giving it almost-exclusive control of the NYT Co.'s board of directors. Now comes news that two large Times investors are nominating their own members of the company's board, without prior approval from Arthur "Pinch" Sulzberger:

A pair of investors disclosed plans Monday to name their own slate of four directors at The New York Times Co., saying the current board hasn't acted aggressively enough to meet the demands of the rapidly changing media industry.

The investors, Firebrand Partners and Harbinger Capital Partners, laid out their position in a letter to Times' Chairman Arthur Sulzberger Jr. and CEO Janet Robinson. The letter, dated Sunday, was disclosed in a regulatory filing Monday. [...]

Firebrand Partners's founder Scott Galloway said in his letter that he and Harbinger had no intention of changing the Times' two-class share structure, which allows the Sulzberger family to maintain control of the company.

But Galloway added that the current board, "while impressive in stature, has not been effective in inspiring the requisite bold action this media environment demands."

Galloway said in his letter that he wanted to meet with Times managers to discuss an "optimal capital structure" for the company and to find a way to transform the Times "from a low growth company to a robust firm that is both the newspaper of record and the most trusted starting point on the Internet."

Imagine that: Actual capitalism instead of crony capitalism at America's self-proclaimed "paper of record." Three cheers for Firebrand Partners and Harbinger Capital Partners.

Hat tip: DrewM.

Matthew Sheffield
Matthew Sheffield
Matthew Sheffield, creator of NewsBusters and president of Dialog New Media, an internet marketing and design firm, left NewsBusters at the end of 2013