In the same way you or I would close on a nice little bungalow in an up-and-coming part of town, Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos has just privately closed on the Washington Post, the newspaper equivalent of a nice little bungalow in an up-and-coming part of town.
The Washington Post reported on its own sale, noting that Bezos formally signed on the line which is dotted on Tuesday night.
What Bezos has in mind for the 136-year-old paper is unclear but it is the first time in 80 years that the organization has left the hands of the Graham family. Bezos, whose retail prowess must now translate into a finer understanding of media growth and expansion, faces a paper with a daily circulation of 474,767 and a creaking pay-per-view model online.
This is a fascinating move by Bezos and he should be lauded for his unique decision not to, say, spend $250 million on a boat or a sports team and instead invest in one of our national treasures. Where the WaPo heads now, however, is anyone’s guess.