Meredith Kopit Levien exists in a perpetual yo-yo motion. Most weeks, the CEO of The New York Times Co. spends three days in New York—“sometimes more if needed”—where a pied-à-terre gives her easy access to the company’s landmark Eighth Avenue headquarters. The rest of the time she spends in Washington, D.C., where her family lives and where she keeps a house “in the District.” (“I am offended by people who say they live in Washington when they live in Virginia,” she clarified.)
Late on a recent Friday afternoon, Kopit Levien was in her well-appointed home office, outlining her vision for a continued Times renaissance. A significant part of it took me by surprise. After acquiring online sports publisher The Athletic for $550 million last year, The Times seemed fully in acquisition mode. (It had purchased the hit brain game Wordle for “low seven figures” the same month, two years after picking up Serial Productions, a podcast studio, and Audm, a startup focused on audio narration of long-form stories.) But Kopit Levien expressed little interest in more splashy purchases.
“We get asked a lot about, ‘What else are you going to buy?’ And my big message is, we are incredibly focused on all the value we already have and actually turning that into our growth,” she said.