Hedge Fund Harbinger Capital Sells New York Times Shares (NYT) ~ market folly

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Hedge Fund Harbinger Capital Sells New York Times Shares (NYT)

Philip Falcone's hedge fund firm Harbinger Capital Partners recently filed an amended 13D and a Form 4 with the SEC, updating their stake in The New York Times Co (NYT). Due to activity on November 17th, 2009 they are now showing a 14.64% ownership stake in NYT. They now hold 21,038,434 shares and this is a decrease from their previous position. On November 17th they sold 2,500,000 shares at a price of $9.00 per share, bringing them to their share total to the amount listed above.

This is not the first time that Harbinger has decreased their stake, as we previously covered them selling shares of NYT before. We have also taken a step back and wondered whether or not newspapers are a dying industry? They certainly have some business model problems to address in the near future. It would seem that yet again, Harbinger has sold shares at a loss. They initially acquired their stake between $15-20 per share almost two years ago when they invested over $500 million. Their 14.64% ownership stake is down from their previous high of around 20% ownership of the company. We'll have to see if they continue to sell going forward, as in the past they had sought suitors for their NYT stake. We also note that Mexican billionaire Carlos Slim has a hefty position in NYT as well, so there are definitely some prominent players in NYT.

Philip Falcone runs his $6 billion hedge fund Harbinger Capital Partners with a focus both on equity plays and distressed plays and often takes concentrated positions in companies. For more of their recent activity, we recently penned a post detailing a portfolio update on Falcone's hedge fund and also covered the execution of their Calpine offering (CPN) as well.

Taken from Google Finance, The New York Times Company is a "diversified media company, including newspapers, Internet businesses, a radio station, investments in paper mills and other investments. The Company is organized in two segments: News Media Group and the About Group. Additionally, the Company owns equity interests in a Canadian newsprint company, a supercalendered paper manufacturing partnership in Maine, and Metro Boston LLC, which publishes a free daily newspaper in the greater Boston area."

blog comments powered by Disqus