Fox News Channel’s Bill O’Reilly on Thursday night called Newsmax Media a “patriot” for its efforts to buy Newsweek magazine.
“The conservative outfit Newsmax has made an offer to buy Newsweek magazine, which is going down the drain,” O’Reilly said on his “Pinheads and Patriots” segment of “The O’Reilly Factor.”
“Now would it be refreshing for a weekly American magazine not to be a liberal enterprise?
“So we wish Newsmax good luck. They’re patriots for getting in the game.”
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This week it was announced that Newsmax had in fact made a formal offer to buy the 77-year-old newsweekly, which has been placed up for sale by The Washington Post Company.
In a statement, Newsmax issued an assurance that if it became owner of the weekly it would respect Newsweek’s editorial mission.
The Newsweek statement reads:
“Newsmax Media, Inc. has made a bid for Newsweek. Newsmax Media is a multi-platform publishing company that produces a variety of print and electronic products covering news, politics, health, finance and lifestyle, with different editorial voices and perspectives.
“The company’s bid for Newsweek’s print and online assets is congruent with its objective to diversify and expand into numerous distinct media brand offerings, like any major multi-title publisher.
“Newsweek’s staff, advertisers and readers can be assured that if Newsmax Media, Inc.’s bid is successful, Newsweek's stellar brand and editorial representation would remain distinct from our other brands. Newsweek would continue in its mission to objectively report the news and provide analysis from a wide spectrum of perspectives.”
Founded in 1998 by its CEO, journalist Christopher Ruddy, Newsmax.com is an independent news site with a conservative perspective. Still, it has frequently offered a platform for liberal voices. Former Democratic New York City Mayor Ed Koch is a regular Newsmax columnist, as are Susan Estrich and Lanny Davis, who have both served in prominent positions for the national Democratic Party.
During the late 1990s, Newsmax published First Lady Hillary Clinton's syndicated column and has been conducted exclusive interviiews with other prominent Democrats including former President Bill Clinton and James Carville, among others.
Press reaction to Newsmax's bid has been generally favorable. New York magazine, for example, noted, “Newsmax is a profitable multi-platform media company that has mastered the Web in a time of rapid growth and change.
“A company that has mastered both the Internet and marketing itself to what Sarah Palin calls ‘the real America’ may not be a bad choice to usher Newsweek into a new era. In fact, it may even be the best choice.”
Newsmax has garnered high praise for its business model. Steve Forbes, the Forbes, Inc. CEO and editor-in-chief of Forbes magazine, told Talkers magazine recently that Christopher Ruddy “not only understood that the Web is fundamentally transforming media, but he also acted on this insight to create a marketing powerhouse.
“That’s why he is prospering today in the media world while others are withering.”
Talkers magazine, in an April cover story on the company headlined “The Rise of Newsmax,” said Newsmax is reinventing the media model.
“It’s a model others can follow who want both commercial success and influence on public policy,” said Talkers publisher Michael Harrison.
Newsmax's print monthly, Newsmax magazine, has seen its subscriber base grow by over 100 percent in the past 18 months, to a current paid circulation of approximately 240,000, or an estimated readership of 800,000. Subscribers pay about $40 for an annual subscription.
The magazine's editorial director is Cable Neuhaus, an award-winning editor who is a veteran of Time Warner and served as a top editor at both People and Entertainment Weekly magazines.
Also, this year Folio magazine, the bible of the magazine industry, named Ruddy to its "Folio 40" list of the most important “influencers and innovators” in the industry. Folio described Ruddy as a "C-Level visionary" of the business.
And Britain’s Daily Telegraph named Ruddy to its list of the 100 “most influential U.S. conservatives.”
The Financial Times, a respected business daily published in Britain, profiled Newsmax business success in a story headlined “Rise of Newsmax Defies Media Trend.”
The paper reported that while other U.S. media brands have suffered through a difficult period, Newsmax’s business is booming and its website “is emerging as one of the strongest conservative voices online.”
Newsmax Media is profitable and expects revenue this year to reach $50 million. The company is a multi-media publisher that covers not only current news and politics but health and finance through such sites as moneynews.com and newsmaxhealth.com. The company also publishes more than a dozen specialized paid newsletters.
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