Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos on Monday said that he is buying The Washington Post and affiliated papers for $250 million, a bolt-from-the-blue announcement that instantly shook up the newspaper industry. The sale will end the Graham family's four generations of ownership of the storied paper.
“Everyone at the Post Company and everyone in our family has always been proud of The Washington Post — of the newspaper we publish and of the people who write and produce it,” said Donald E. Graham, Chairman and CEO of The Washington Post Company. “I, along with Katharine Weymouth and our board of directors, decided to sell only after years of familiar newspaper-industry challenges made us wonder if there might be another owner who would be better for the Post (after a transaction that would be in the best interest of our shareholders). Jeff Bezos’ proven technology and business genius, his long-term approach and his personal decency make him a uniquely good new owner for the Post.”
Bezos himself, not Amazon, will own the Post. He is just the latest billionaire to try his hand at reviving a struggling newspaper. Bezos had this to say about the deal: "There would be change with or without new ownership. But the key thing I hope people will take away from this is that the values of The Post do not need changing. The duty of the paper is to the readers, not the owners.”