If you want to buy the P-I's treasured globe, you have to buy the P-I first, says the broker who is trying to sell the 146-year-old newspaper for the Hearst Corp. No side deals, even if the globe may be the most-sought piece of the sale. Still, according to a report by the Pacific Northwest Newspaper Guild, the deal being brokered by Broadwater & Associates of New York includes the iconic P-I name as well as its online brand, seattlepi.com. Hearst will also throw in its interest, rights and obligations in the Seattle Joint Operating Agreement - though, if the print edition is folded, an online P-I apparently could be operated outside the JOA, Hearst thinks.
The globe-and-newspaper package also includes:
• The office furniture, computers, cameras and other physical equipment directly owned by Hearst that is used to produce the P-I.
• The intellectual property rights to the product and all its historical archives, including electronic, hard copy and microfiche.
• Any associated URLs that Hearst owns outright.
• A 25-percent interest in the annual Seattle Home Show.
• The P-I's contracts with other services and syndicates, such as the Associated Press.
• Any of Hearst's accounts receivables and accounts payables, money coming in or out. (The P-I does generate some direct revenue from the Home Show and sale of images and permissions, but last year it was less than $300,000.)
No financial assistance or subsidies are included, unlike the 2000 deal in which Hearst gave a buyer $66 million to take the San Francisco Examiner off its hands.
The guild says there's no real estate included, although the leased offices in the P-I Building on the waterfront can be assigned to the new owner. Nor is there an announced price tag. That information, according to broker Bob Broadwater, is available only to an "accredited investor of sufficient net worth." To qualify, you have to show you are rich enough to not only buy the P-I but to sustain current losses of up to $1.5 million a month. If so, the globe is yours.