Report: Time Inc. in merger talks with Meredith

FeaturesAssociated Press

Time Inc. is considering selling itself to fellow publisher Meredith Corp., according to media reports.

The New York Times initially reported that the New York-based publisher of Time and People is involved in a new round of negotiations with Meredith, the publisher of Family Circle and Better Homes and Gardens.

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The report, based on unidentified people, also says that billionaire brothers Charles G. and David H. Koch are backing Meredith's offer with more than $500 million in equity. Meredith is based in Des Moines, Iowa, and also owns TV stations.

The Wall Street Journal reported Thursday that Meredith had submitted a bid of $17 to $20 per share, which would value Time at almost $2 billion.

Time and Meredith both declined comment on the reports.

The reported negotiations come after speculation over a sale earlier this year. Time had said in April that several parties expressed interest, but no sales process was ever started, and that it would continue with its strategy of growing digital revenue. The company's magazines include Time, Sports Illustrated and Fortune.

A deal in 2013 between Time and Meredith collapsed.

The shift in consumer attention to the internet has hit magazine publishers. Time has cut jobs in the face of two years of annual losses and declining revenue.

Time shares rose 28 percent to close at $16.20. Meredith shares added 10.5 percent to $59.95.