While negotiating to sell the Chicago Sun-Times to its management and other investors for $130 million, Rupert Murdoch, the Australian-turned-American media mogul, soon may put his tabloid Boston Herald on the block.
Murdoch would sell his Boston newspaper for the same reason he is selling the Sun-Times: to meet Federal Communications Commission rules that prohibit an individual from owning a newspaper and a television station in the same city. Murdoch was given two years after his purchase of a Chicago UHF station to sell the newspaper.
Also the owner of Washington's WTTG, Channel 5, Murdoch is in final negotiations to acquire Boston's WXNE, Channel 25, from Pat Robertson's Christian Broadcasting Network, Wall Street sources said.
Wall Street sources said Murdoch, through his investment banker Drexel Burnham Lambert Inc., also has indicated interest in acquiring Philadelphia's WPHL-TV, Channel 17, which the Providence Journal Co. has put up for sale.
Murdoch's television acquisitions are the cornerstone of his effort to build a fourth national television network. As part of that effort, he also recently acquired Twentieth Century-Fox Film Corp.
Last year, Murdoch acquired seven Metromedia television stations from John Kluge for $2 billion.