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Pinch, Feeling the Pinch, Agrees to Meet With Harbinger Nominees

Arthur "Pinch" Sulzberger and the board of the New York Times have agreed to meet with four nominees being put forth by Scott Galloway, of Firebrand Partners, and his partner, Atlanta-based investment firm Harbinger Capital, Times spokeswoman Catherine Mathis confirmed to the AP today. Up until now, the board has declined a meeting with the activist shareholders — who earlier this month announced they'd like the Times to cut several small businesses from their portfolio and build up their online operations — and have essentially ignored the nominees they proposed adding to the board, swashbuckling former ZBT brother and Red Envelope founder Galloway included. This is likely because Sulzberger was thinking something along the lines of, "What the eff does an ex–frat boy b-school professor with a moderate-to-undistinguished investing record know about the newspaper business? Fuck 'em!" But over the past month, the firm has amassed a somewhat terrifying 19 percent stake in the Gray Lady, and now, apparently, Pinch & Co. don't feel they have a choice. The Times' annual meeting is set for April 22. N.Y. Times to Meet With Board Nominees [AP]

Scott Galloway Raises Stake, Prepares to Plunge It Into Heart of ‘NYT’

FINANCE • Ah, so that's where all the G5s on the Teterborough tarmac were headed! The private-equity world descends upon Munich for the annual spectacularly named Super Return conference. [DealBook/NYT] • Vagilante Scott Galloway and Harbinger Capital Partners raise their stake in the Times to just over 19 percent. [NYP] • Hey, everyone! Hedge funds are a risk to the entire financial system! No duh. [Business Week]

Arthur Sulzberger Slaps Back at Vagilante Hedge-Funders

Swiftly after yesterday's news that Firebrand Partners and Harbinger Capital Partners increased their ownership of the New York Times to nearly 10 percent, we learn that Arthur Sulzberger has made his nominations for the two empty seats on the company's board. The two hedge funds were hoping to seat two of their own people on the committee, to steer it toward focusing on its core assets and developing its digital brands. To do that, they nominated four digital and financial gurus: AOL's Gregory Shove; James Kohlberg, co-founder of the private equity firm Kohlberg & Co.; the Mayfield Fund's Allen Morgan; and our favorite vagilante ever, Scott Galloway. The Times, in retaliation, nominated Drugstore.com CEO Dawn Lepore and former Salomon CEO Robert Denham. The hedge funds met with Sulzberger on Friday and urged him to have his nomination committee interview their candidates, but apparently Sulzberger was uninterested. In our inexpert opinion, the board should just vote to approve whichever new member will support more Britney Spears coverage. Because apparently that's the only way to make money in print these days. Sulzberger Strikes Back [Portfolio] Related: Vagilante Shareholder Scott Galloway Takes on the 'Times', A Harbinger of Things to Come? Hedge Funds Increase Share in 'NYT'

A Harbinger of Things to Come? Hedge Funds Increase Share in ‘NYT’

Avast! According to documents filed with the SEC, Firebrand Partners and Harbinger Capital Partners, the hedge funds seeking to put their nominees on the board of the New York Times, have increased their stake in the paper to 9.8 percent. (It was previously reported they owned 4.9 percent). We're no good at math, but we'd say that there's a 90 percent chance that soon enough, Firebrand's vagilante founder Scott Galloway will be sitting on the board, breathing his fiery Johnny Walker breath all over Arthur Schlesinger and Times chief executive Janet Robinson. Hedge Funds Lift Stake in New York Times [WSJ] Earlier: Vagilante Shareholder Scott Galloway Takes on the ‘Times’