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Waxman

Sharon Waxman Crows: “The vision of reinventing the venerable Hollywood trade as a business-to-consumer glossy publication attracting brand advertising with a strong digital presence didn’t work. It was never going to work. Although owner Todd Boehly tried valiantly, the economics just never made sense. The glossy weekly publication never reached more than 70,000 or so readers. It was launched at a time when print had already begun its steep decline. And with a well-paid newsroom and a well-padded business staff that numbered as high as 250, even a [vital] digital audience would never keep up with the costs. TheWrap has chronicled this dilemma at regular intervals since breaking the news in winter 2009 that a group of investors that included James Finkelstein and Guggenheim Partners’ Boehly were buying the Nielsen-owned entertainment publications for a bargain-basement price of $70 million. Even back then, nearly all of those publications were losing money and THR was in one of the worst situations of them all. This was the self-same year that TheWrap was founded. And when a few of the investors approached me to buy TheWrap and bring it into the group, I told them what I also wrote for the record: I didn’t get it.”

“The Hollywood Reporter’s parent company Valence Media has been courting Jess Cagle, the former editor in chief of People and Entertainment Weekly who currently serves as SiriusXM’s chief entertainment anchor, to replace Matt Belloni as THR’s top editor, TheWrap has learned. According to an individual with knowledge of the conversations, Valence co-CEOs Asif Satchu and Modi Wiczyk have been in contact with Cagle, hoping he will take over the Hollywood trade. But the job may not be easy to fill given all the bad press generated in the wake of Belloni’s abrupt ouster last week and massive staff cuts this week to THR and sister publications Billboard and Vibe.”

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