Monday, June 18, 2012

Newspaper Work With Warren Buffett As Boss

BUFFALO — Over the years, newspaper owners have built monuments to themselves in the form of giant buildings, statues and plaques commemorating their roles in their communities and the country at large. At the headquarters of The Buffalo News here, a sand-colored office building across the river from a fragrant Cheerios factory, the only visible sign of the owner is a small photograph hanging in the office of the publisher, Stanford Lipsey, signed, “To the best in the business, Warren.”

Warren is, of course, the billionaireWarren E. Buffett, but the modesty of his physical presence at the paper — he has not visited the paper in the last eight years — understates his interest in the paper, which a unit of his company, Berkshire Hathaway, bought in 1977.
Mr. Buffett’s views on newspapers have been a hot topic of late. Three years after telling his shareholders that he would not buy a newspaper at any price, Mr. Buffett has moved aggressively into the business, buying 63 papers and revealing a 3 percent stake in Lee Enterprises, a chain of mostly small dailies based in Iowa.

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