BABES IN BUFFETTLAND: Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway Inc. Tuesday agreed to buy children’s clothing maker Garan Inc. in a cash deal valued at $270.6 million. Omaha-based Berkshire said it will pay Garan shareholders $60 a share, a 6.8 percent premium. Garan’s management team will remain in place, Berkshire said. Before the agreement was announced, Garan shares closed lower by 35 cents, or 0.6 percent, at $56.20 in trading on the American Stock Exchange. In the fiscal year ended Sept. 30, sales rose 8.9 percent to $257.2 million while net income rose 32.9 percent to $22.6 million, or $4.60 a diluted share. Buffett’s company also owns Fruit of the Loom and has an interest in numerous apparel and retail firms.
This story first appeared in the July 3, 2002 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
DOW JONES MOVES: Peter Kann, chairman and chief executive officer of Dow Jones & Co., will give up his role as publisher of The Wall Street Journal, as well as his chief operating officer title. Replacing him as operating chief will be Richard Zannino, an executive vice president of the company and formerly the firm’s chief financial officer. Karen Elliott House, formerly president of the company’s international group and a Pulitizer Prize winning reporter, will be the Journal’s new publisher.
WEB TITLE FOLDS: Yahoo! Internet Life, which was launched in 1995 and covered the content, resources and lifestyle of the Web, will suspend publication with the August 2002 issue. Published by Ziff-Davis Media, the title suffered from both the decline of the technology market and the burst of the Internet bubble. According to Media Industry Newsletter, ad pages plunged 51.9 percent through July, and the company believed revenue growth showed no signs of coming back. The magazine, which had a rate base of 1.1 million, experienced a 51.9 percent decline in newsstand sales in the second half of 2001, while paid circulation grew 9.9 percent, according to Audit Bureau of Circulation. Some 35 staffers, including editor in chief Barry Colson and publisher Diane Silberstein, have lost their jobs.
In other publishing news, Ann Omvig Maine, editor in chief of Meredith Corp.’s Renovation Style, has been named interim editor in chief of sister publication, Traditional Home, while Meredith conducts a search for a permanent replacement for Mark Mayfield, who, as reported, resigned to become editor in chief of House Beautiful, succeeding Marian McEvoy.