OK, now that we're past the Independence Day holiday and moving further into July, I'm betting that we're getting close to the completion of a deal under which News Corp.
Here's why: Last week, the Journal itself reported that much of the wording was complete on a document that would protect the paper's top three editors -- and presumably insulate its news operation -- from interference by News Corp. founder and CEO Rupert Murdoch. The document may put Murdoch, "who isn't expected to shirk from implementing his strong notions of how a news-gathering enterprise should operate, on notice that he's being closely watched," the Journal reported.
Now, as a new week dawns, fresh reports have surfaced that Los Angeles supermarket magnate Ron Burkle will meet with Dow Jones higher-ups relative to his own efforts to acquire the company. Burkle, who recently partnered with real estate investor and fellow L.A. billionaire Eli Broad in an unsuccessful attempt to acquire an interest in Tribune
I'd rather have Rupert overseeing Dow Jones. He has extensive experience running international news operations. Burkle does not.
I'm not ignoring Murdoch's well-earned reputation for meddling in his properties' news operations. My assessment includes the assumption that the "fence" between Murdoch and the Journal's editorial effort would indeed be hard for him to scale.
The Journal also could find itself in a beneficial partnership with News Corp.'s announced financial news network. If nothing else, the combination would surely result in formidable competition for General Electric's
So the next couple of weeks could prove intriguing regarding two of the world's major news and entertainment companies. And should News Corp. prevail in its efforts to pry Dow Jones away from its controlling Bancroft family, the resulting combination could result in an interesting play for Fools with a bent for media investments.
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