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The Washington Post Co. has agreed to sell its flagship paper to Amazon.com founder Jeff Bezos for $250 million in cash. The paper will not be part of Amazon, which is prospering handsomely.

The deal includes a few other smaller papers. The Washington Post Co. will change its name at some point. It is retaining certain assets such as publications Foreign Policy, Slate, and TheRoot.com.

It will not sell its headquarters building, cable operator CableOne, and the Post-Newsweek network of TV stations.

The Washington D.C. company will keep its for-profit education operation, Kaplan. This company has not generated as much controversy as San Diego's Bridgepoint Education, but there have been many probing questions about its modus operandi.

Bezos is said to be worth $25 billion.

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Comments

Visduh Aug. 5, 2013 @ 5:31 p.m.

This could be part of a new pattern for billionaires to engage in some unwitting philanthropy. That is, Mr. Huge Bucks buys a newspaper in hopes of making a killing and then operates it at a loss for years and years, waiting for the thing to turn around. Inadvertently, he keeps it going as a public service, and is remembered more for his news operation than he is for how he made the fat fortune in the first place. Bezos has something very profitable in mind here, but he's straying off his turf, and could find out that his plans just don't pay off.

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Don Bauder Aug. 5, 2013 @ 6:48 p.m.

Visduh: The Washington Post has really sunk. It's amazing how far it has fallen. I am not sure I understand what Bezos wants, and why he paid $250 million without getting the juicy downtown Washington real estate. Best, Don Bauder

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dwbat Aug. 5, 2013 @ 5:54 p.m.

Let's celebrate that the smarmy Koch brothers didn't snap it up. And while it will not be part of Amazon, the Washington Post (ad-free) is already available via the Amazon Kindle for $11.99 a month. Amazon has a huge interest in media distribution, and that will only grow. Amazon also has streaming of recent movies for a fee, like Netflix. Bezos is no fool, so I'm sure he has some interesting plans for the Post.

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Don Bauder Aug. 5, 2013 @ 6:51 p.m.

dwbat: But the last thing he wants to do is to have healthy Amazon take on the sick Post. You may be right: he wants to bring it aboard later. Here's a bet that it will either decline in value more, or stagnate, and it won't be integrated into Amazon. Frankly, it appears to me, without analyzing the deal, that he paid too much. Best, Don Bauder

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Ponzi Aug. 5, 2013 @ 7:24 p.m.

A lobbying tool. Amazon has many issues ahead. Sales taxes, its employment practices (they use a lot of contract labor with low wages and no benefits), antitrust, patents, banking, monopoly, international relations, internet law, and many more. Why not own the bullhorn in the middle of the beltway.

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Don Bauder Aug. 6, 2013 @ 12:02 p.m.

Ponzi: That is quite possible. Use the paper to influence legislation that could line your own pockets. What the hell, Manchester is using his alleged newspaper to line his own pockets in San Diego. Best, Don Bauder

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theOtherLadyDi Aug. 6, 2013 @ 11:59 p.m.

I can't believe that, with Amazon's foray into streaming internet video, Mr. Bezos didn't cough up another 1.5 billion or so and pick up the CableONE cable provider assets. Being a cable provider and internet ISP would seem more in synergy with Amazon that a newspaper.

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Don Bauder Aug. 7, 2013 @ 7:16 a.m.

theOtherLadyDi: Of course, Bezos claims he bought it for himself; it will not be part of Amazon. Skeptics can see many ways by which the Post can help Amazon. With consolidation going on in that communications industry, companies have to eat or be eaten. Best, Don Bauder

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