Economy

American Media looking to sell tabloid National Enquirer

American Media looking to sell tabloid National Enquirer

The National Enquirer, a touchstone of American tabloids, is up for sale, the publisher said on Thursday.

Implicitly referring to the boost from the Bezos scandal on the brands, American Media President and CEO, David J. Pecker said in a statement: "Because of this focus, we feel the future opportunities with the tabloids can be best exploited by different ownership".

Bezos himself had suggested in his own online post that he had become the enemy of Saudi Arabia and Trump due to coverage of the murder of Khashoggi in the Washington Post, and pointed out that AMI had long sought to ingratiate itself with both the kingdom and the President.

Eventually, prosecutors signed a non-prosecution agreement with AMI during the Cohen probe and the company committed that it would provide cooperation in the future and stay out of trouble.

Trump and his lawyers have argued the payments were a personal matter unrelated to the election.

AMI has defended its reporting on Bezos' affair with Lauren Sanchez, a former television anchor.

(National Enquirer via AP) This image shows the front page of the January 28, 2019, edition of the National Enquirer featuring a story about Amazon founder and CEO Jeff Bezos' divorce.

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With readership down, AMI tried to refinance more than $400 million in debt earlier this year.

American Media agreed in August to co-operate with federal prosecutors looking into campaign violations in exchange for immunity.

The Post also reported that the sale decision was also borne by the displeasure of hedge fund manager Anthony Melchiorre whose $4 billion Chatham Asset Management controls 80 percent stake in the AMI.

They are attempting to examine Bezos's private investigators' allegation that the Saudis "gained private information" from his phone, and that such information wound up in the hands of American Media Inc. tabloid the National Enquirer, which published Bezos's texts.

American Media has been expanding in the last two years, buying Us Weekly, Men's Journal, Bauer's US celebrity and teen line, and TEN: Publishing's Adventure Sports Network (ASN).

An AMI spokesman did not immediately respond to a request for further comment.