The Wall Street Journal and the Denver Bancrofts
Rupert Murdoch's News Corp. was set to wrap up a $5 billion agreement to purchase Dow Jones & Co., publisher of The Wall Street Journal, after three months of drama in the Bancroft family, which controls Dow Jones, and public debate about journalistic values.A Denver law firm played a pivotal role in the sale:
But the big swing shareholder to switch sides was a group of Bancroft family trusts holding 9.1% of Dow Jones's shareholder vote and overseen by a Denver law firm. The firm, Holme Roberts & Owen, had been holding out for a higher offer from News Corp. -- a request repeatedly rejected by Mr. Murdoch. The Denver trusts pushed hard on other Bancroft family trusts in Boston to also hold out for more money, at least for the holders of B-class supervoting shares, which are mostly held by the Bancrofts. But when some of those Boston trusts consented to a News Corp. deal late Monday, the Denver trustees lost much of their bargaining power.I admit to being confused by the fact that, while the Denver Bancroft connection has been featured prominently in national coverage of the sale since at least late last week, it's coverage in the Denver dailies has been superficial at best. I've scoured the Post and News archives and all I can find are un-bylined re-writes of wire-service reports. (I'd love to be corrected on this; if you can find a link to anything more substantial, please post it in the comments section.) How is that Denver's dailies missed such an obvious opportunity to shine on a local angle to a national story? Is the whole point of a local news operation that it will have contacts and resources beyond what the out-of-towners possess?
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