At a time when the media industry is reeling from issues related to profitability and readership, it is unlikely for a particularly controversial tabloid to find many buyers, but National Enquirer has sprung a surprise. The controversial American tabloid which has been in the news for all the wrong reasons over the recent years is going to be sold to James Cohen, a high powered magazine distributor. The National Enquirer is known for publishing controversial scoops, and its latest one was the exclusive about Amazon chief Jeff Bezos’ infidelity. However, it later emerged that it had tried to blackmail Amazon chief as well and since then, the tabloid has been on the ropes. That being said, the National Enquirer remained a hugely profitable tabloid despite all the controversies and perhaps it was due to its style of reporting that it managed to generate such massive sales.
Its close relations with the United States President Donald Trump had also come in for scrutiny and eventually led to the tabloid becoming a byword for biased reporting. Last year it was revealed that National Enquirer had paid adult star Karen McDougal $150,000 for a tell-all about an extramarital affair with the current President Donald Trump. However, the story was never published, and media experts say that it was a case of simply buying a story so that it could be killed. National Enquirer’s parent company, American Media Inc revealed that the tabloid and two related publications have been sold to James Cohen. Although the parent company did not reveal the total value of the deal, local media in the United States has reported that the deal could be around $100 million.
In its statement, the head of American Media Inc David Pecker stated,
“The sale of these brands shows their vitality in today’s newsstand marketplace where they continue to generate nearly $30 million in profit annually.”
James Cohen is a member of the Cohen family that is the owner of Hudson News Distributors, that remains one of the biggest distributors of magazines in North American and the sale represents the fact that despite all controversies, National Enquirer remains a profitable business. It is not yet known whether there were any rival bids for the tabloid. After the deal was announced, James Cohen said as much. He said, “Year after year, the Enquirer has continued to be one of the best-selling and most profitable newsstand titles.”