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Newsmax’s CEO has responded to rumors that allies of President Donald Trump are interested in buying the company.
In an interview with Variety, CEO Christopher Ruddy said that they are not actively planning to sell the company.
He then had this to say:
“We have always seen ourselves as an independent news agency, and we want to continue with that mission. But we are open — [Trump] is going to be a political and media force after he leaves the White House, and we would be open to talking to him about a weekly show.”
“We would like to overtake Fox News in the next 12 months, and I think it’s do-able.”
Hicks Equity Partners, who are allies of President Trump, have been linked to rumors of buying Newsmax according to a report from the Wall Street Journal.
Newsmax may be focused on conservative audiences, but it has very liberal views of where its business can go in the future as an independent news operation.
The top executive of the news outlet said the company intends to move forward on its own, and noted Newsmax has little desire to turn the network, which has seen its ratings pop since the presidential election, into a TV outlet focused largely on a forum for a post-White House Donald Trump.
“Newsmax would never become ‘Trump TV,'” Christopher Ruddy, the CEO of Newsmax, told Variety in an interview Sunday evening. “We have always seen ourselves as an independent news agency, and we want to continue with that mission. But we are open — [Trump] is going to be a political and media force after he leaves the White House, and we would be open to talking to him about a weekly show.” The executive also said “we are not actively selling” the company at this time, though he notes he has had expressions of interest from “investors, investment banks and strategic players” in the recent past.
“We listen to them, but our main focus is continuing: We would like to overtake Fox News in the next 12 months, and I think it’s do-able.”
Ruddy made his remarks following a report Sunday from The Wall Street Journal that said private-equity firm Hicks Equity Partners had explored the idea of “acquiring and investing in Newsmax,” potentially as part of an effort to build a rival to Fox News Channel. “We have no deal with them” says Ruddy, who noted that he has had conversations on various topics with Thomas Hicks, the firm’s leader. “I have spoken to him on and off through the past three years, because we travel in political and social circles. It’s nothing unusual for us to have a conversation.”
Ruddy recognizes that Fox News is dying fast, and already finds himself defending against the likes of other fake news organizations, such as CNN.
Ruddy corrected this rediculous claim from CNN's Brian Stelter on Twitter:
Deadline has more on the earlier rumors of Hick Equity Partners buying Newsmax:
Newsmax TV, the conservative, pro-Donald Trump television network whose ratings have lately jumped as its rivals leaned to the left, may be a takeover or acquisition target, the Wall Street Journal reported today.
The WSJ said that allies of President Trump have been looking for a vehicle to challenge Fox News, which some on the right believe is gradually moving away from conservatives. Whether Donald Trump himself would be involved if he fails in his bid to overturn the election results was not mentioned. However, Trump has long been rumored to be interested in his own conservative network platform.
The report indicates Hicks Equity Partners, a private-equity firm with ties to a co-chair of the Republican National Committee, has held talksabout acquiring and investing in Newsmax. The WSJ cited “people familiar with the matter,” and said any move would be part of a larger effort that could also include a streaming-video service.
How far along talks are for any Newsmax investment is unclear, the WSJ said.
Newsmax is poised to make good on Ruddy's goals to overtake the other media outlets.
Americans are tired of the terrible reporting and the lies from the fake news.