National Enquirer sold to Hudson News CEO James Cohen

Supermarket tabloid has been in the headlines for its connections to President Donald Trump
Image: U.S. tabloid newspaper the National Enquirer is on display for sale in Washington
Tabloid newspaper the National Enquirer is on display for sale in Washington on April 10, 2019.Jeenah Moon / Reuters file

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By David K. Li

The National Enquirer, the supermarket tabloid linked closely to President Donald Trump, has been sold to newspaper retailer James Cohen, both sides announced Thursday.

American Media Inc., the tabloid's parent company, also sold sister publications Globe and National Examiner to Cohen, CEO of the airport newsstand company Hudson News, they said.

Cohen purchased the publications for $100 million, the Washington Post reported, citing people familiar with the agreement.

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"The sale of these brands shows their vitality in today's newsstand marketplace where they continue to generate nearly $30 million in profit annually," American Media President and CEO David Pecker said in a statement.

"James and his team at Hudson have a proven history in publishing and have the market-based knowledge and long-term vision needed to ensure the growth of these brands," he said.

Even in a rapidly changing media landscape, The Enquirer name still carries great value, according to Cohen.

"Year after year, the Enquirer has continued to be one of the best-selling and most profitable newsstand titles," Cohen said in a statement released by AMI.

The Enquirer and Pecker, a longtime Trump ally, have been in the news for the tabloid's role in the catch-and-kill story of former Playboy model Karen McDougal.

She claimed to have an affair with then-reality show star Trump. The tabloid has admitted to paying McDougal for the rights to that story, with no intentions of actually running it. Trump has denied the affair.

More recently, the Enquirer has been in a battle with Jeff Bezos, the founder and CEO of Amazon. Bezos released emails from AMI that seemed to show it threatening to publish embarrassing photos of him and his girlfriend if Bezo's Washington Post didn’t drop its investigation of the Enquirer.