News

Bid by businessman Lewis Katz lands Philadelphia Inquirer and Daily News

Written by The Associated Press | May 27, 2014 10:09 AM
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(Philadelphia) -- Pulitzer Prize-winning editor Bill Marimow is expected to stay atop The Philadelphia Inquirer after the newspaper was sold at an insider sale.

Businessman Lewis Katz and philanthropist H.G. "Gerry'' Lenfest won today's auction with an $88 million bid. They beat out George Norcross, a businessman and powerful New Jersey Democrat.

Katz vows to make the Inquirer one of the county's great newspapers, with a focus on serious journalism. Yet he concedes that advertising and circulation continue to decline.

He says it will be "an enormous undertaking'' to stabilize the company, which operates the Inquirer, the Philadelphia Daily News and Philly.com.

The company is being sold amid an ownership feud between Katz and Norcross. They were among a group that bought the company for $55 million in 2012.

An earlier version of this story is below: 

Businessman Lewis Katz and philanthropist H.G. "Gerry" Lenfest are taking over Philadelphia's two largest newspapers with an $88 million auction bid.

Katz and another businessman, George Norcross, had bought The Philadelphia Inquirer, the Philadelphia Daily News and the Philly.com news website for $55 million in 2012. But they began feuding and competed to take control at Tuesday's auction.

He made his fortune investing in the Kinney Parking empire and the Yankees Entertainment and Sports Network in New York. He supports the investigative reporting favored by current Inquirer editor Bill Marimow.

Norcross had owned just over 50 percent of the company. Katz held a 26 percent stake and his ally Lenfest, a former cable magnate, a 16 percent stake.

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