The reports speculated that the former New York mayor might pay as much as $5 billion for the ‘Gray Lady’, well over its actual market capitalization of $2.3 billion.
News of Bloomberg’s interest in the paper initially surfaced on Fox Business Network (FBN) over the weekend, leading to a spike in after-hours trading. FBN’s Charles Gasparino sited “media bankers” as the source of speculation and also reported that there was “lots of talk” about Mike Bloomberg’s renewed interest in the newspaper, considered as one of the most influential opinion maker in the United States.
Mike Bloomberg, founder of a large media empire, had shown interest in acquiring the New York Times in the past, but the owners of the newspaper, the Sulzberger family, has repeatedly turned down his offers.
Mike Bloomberg, ranked as the 14th richest person in Forbes magazine’s last annual ranking, is the founder and owner of Bloomberg LP. The media and financial services company reported a revenue of $9 billion in 2014.
Bloomberg LP’s spokesman Ty Trippet dismissed the media reports on Mike Bloomberg’s bid as “rumours”.