Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Murdochs Next Move

Murdochs News Corp (NYSE:NWS)big money offer for Dow Jones (NYSE:DJ) continues to receive criticism. The Pulitzer Prize winning Beijing Office of the Wall Street journal has written a publicly reported letter expressing support against the offer. The journalists who annoyed Chinese government officials with critical articles are rightfully concerned about editorial interference. If Murdoch wins they will need to be concerned about their jobs.

In the mean time Thomson (NYSE:TOC) and Reuters (RTRSF.PK) have successfully concluded their merger talks and are moving forward with little internal acrimony.

Murdoch needs to break through. Everyone thinks the Bancrofts are exercising a family control issue with a seasoning of hubris and ego. The financial offer is stupendous. What will the winning move be? Continued Bancroft control is not viewed optimistically.

Murdoch's financial offer will probably not be financially trumped. So News Corp needs to bring in the intangible player or factor to lessen worries about editorial control. Rupert needs a beard. The man is 76. His family heirs and successors will not stride the public stage as forcefully as he has.

Watch for a mechanism that allows for editorial integrity to be proposed. Mechanisms are two way streets but it just might remove the only plausible Bancroft concern.

If its end game thinking you want consider bringing in Bloomberg. The combination will create a dominance. I do not think being Mayor of New York would be as interesting as running the new and big game in town. The guy also actually understands the products and market place better than most.