Sulzberger Tells Shareholders: ‘NYT’ Not For Sale

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By: Jennifer Saba

New York Times Co. Chairman Arthur Sulzberger Jr. told shareholders today the company is not on the block.

“This company is not for sale,” he said calling the reported rumors in the media “ill informed.”

Sulzberger said his family is committed to the New York Times Co. even during these challenging times.

“The Ochs/Sulzberger family will be here every step of the way,” Sulzberger said. He acknowledged his father Arthur Sulzberger, who was present at the meeting.

Shareholders elected the company’s recommended slate of directors including Scott Galloway, the founder and CIO of Firebrand Partners, and James Kohlberg, chairman of Kohlberg & Co.

Galloway and Kohlberg along with the other directors elected to the board — Robert Denham, Thomas Middelhoff, and Doreen Toben — each received 77.7% of the participating Class A shareholders’ vote. About 88% of Class A shareholder cast votes.

Earlier this year, Harbinger and Firebrand teamed up and suggested the company nominate its slate of directors, which included Galloway and Kohlberg. Initially, the board urged shareholders to vote against the Harbinger/Firebrand Class A slate but eventually expanded the board, making room for Galloway and Kohlberg as Harbinger and Firebrand gobbled up the company’s shares.

One shareholder stood up and asked Sulzberger why the company was at first so resistant to Harbinger’s slate. Sulzberger responded that the company was “delighted” Galloway and Kohlberg joined the board while assuring shareholders that the family agrees the company has to continue to be profitable.

For the most part, the hour and half annual meeting consisted of shareholders asking not so much questions but rather making statements ranging from the company’s carbon footprint, to the legibility of the paper’s design, to the electrical maintenance of the company’s new headquarter building.

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