Hedge Funds Double New York Times Stake

Feb 12 2008 | 7:49am ET

The hedge funds seeking board representation at The New York Times Co. have doubled their stake in the Gray Lady.

Harbinger Capital Partners said its coalition now controls almost 10% of the Times Co.’s Class A shares, according to a regulatory filing. Class A shareholders elect four directors to the company’s board, while the Sulzberger family, which controls most of the Class B shares, name nine directors.

Last month, Harbinger said it controlled 4.9% of the Class A shares.

In the same filing, Harbinger named its nominees to the Times Co.’s board. Led by Scott Galloway, the New York University marketing professor working with the hedge funds, they include Allen Morgan, a venture capital executive, Gregory Shove, a former AOL executive, and James Kohlberg, founder of private equity firm Kohlberg & Co.

Harbinger said it met with senior Times executives on Friday, but did not say what was discussed. Harbinger’s partner, Firebrand Partners, has said the coalition does not intend to seek a change to the company’s ownership structure. Rather, it wants to encourage the Times to focus more on its core publishing and digital businesses.

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