Jeff Bezos: Be Patient With Washington Post

by Christopher Freeburn | September 3, 2013 10:40 am

washingtonposthq[1]The man who revolutionized the book selling business and pioneered Internet commerce is taking a long-term view of his latest project[2].

Amazon‘s (AMZN[3]) CEO and founder Jeff Bezos says he will visit the Washington Post, which he acquired last month, to speak with staff about his vision for the struggling newspaper. In an interview, Bezos said he will apply the same strategies he used at Amazon to help find a new business model for the iconic newspaper, Reuters noted.

Bezos said he would provide “advice from a distance,” leaving it to the Washington Post‘s team to experiment with new directions. If the paper succeeded in reversing its fortunes, it would be the paper’s staff that deserved the credit, he noted.

Whatever strategy the paper adopts, it will be based on its readers. “I’m skeptical of any mission that has advertisers as its centerpiece,” Bezos said.

He noted that he didn’t have a secret plan to rescue the Washington Post, whose circulation and revenues have slumped in recent years. The Internet billionaire urged patience with the paper’s progress, noting that “nothing happens quickly in this mode.”

Bezos stunned the publishing world last month when he purchased the newspaper[4] from the Washington Post Company (WPO[5]) for $220 million. The newspaper had been run by the legendary Graham family for eight decades.

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