Memo Pad: Jon Hamm's Moment... Businessweek Sale Seen Heating Up...

Jon Hamm was bumped from the cover of Vanity Fair, but the extended Annie Leibovitz shoot made it in.

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BUSINESSWEEK SALE SEEN HEATING UP: Media observers are speculating a deal for McGraw-Hill Cos. to sell BusinessWeek could be put together within the next few months. So far, OpenGate Capital, owners of TV Guide, and Warburg Pincus are said to interested, as are Bruce Wasserstein, owner of New York Magazine; Platinum Equity, and Mansueto Ventures, owners of Fast Company. Coincidentally, Fast Company’s former editor in chief, John Byrne, is now at BusinessWeek, serving as executive editor.

Sources say the asking price could be around $35 million to $40 million, plus perhaps the assumption of debt and other obligations. “It is likely that prices that are being offered now will decline between now and closing as buyers learn more about the state of the business and what the actual costs of operating it are,” noted Reed Phillips, managing partner, DeSilva + Phillips. “At this stage in the process, the name of the game is to bid high so that BusinessWeek engages with you as a possible bidder. Then, as you learn more, try to lower the price to more of what the business may actually be worth.” A spokesman for BusinessWeek said Friday the company is exploring its strategic options (as it had noted in a statement last month) but declined to comment further.

— Amy Wicks

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