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Progressive Farmer magazine sold

January 03, 2007|From Bloomberg News

Time Warner Inc. has sold the Progressive Farmer magazine to publisher DTN for an undisclosed amount as part of a plan to shed smaller Time Inc. publications.

The Progressive Farmer, formed in 1886, is targeted toward rural readers and has more than 600,000 subscribers, the Omaha-based DTN said in a statement.

Time Warner, the world's biggest media company, decided to sell after receiving an offer from DTN, Time Inc. spokeswoman Dawn Bridges said in an interview. Progressive Farmer wasn't one of the 18 smaller magazines originally targeted for sale by Time as the company concentrates on larger titles such as People, Sports Illustrated and Time, she said.

"This was a case of a strategic buyer approaching us," she said. "Once we talked to them, the sale fit into the strategy of how and why we are shedding some of these assets."

Bridges said Time expected to sell the 18 titles -- including Parenting, Popular Science, Yachting, Outdoor Life and Field & Stream, in the first quarter. She said it was likely Time would sell the magazines to "one buyer or possibly two, but not to 18 different buyers." Time Inc. has about 150 titles.

In announcing the sales plan last September, the company described the publications as "niche brands" that "no longer fit with our strategy for Time Inc.'s future."

The publication and staff of Progressive Farmer will remain in Birmingham, Ala., DTN said. The Progressive Farmer will be DTN's first magazine. The company sells information online to the farming industry.

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