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Meredith Corp., the Iowa-based magazine company behind Better Homes and Gardens (and plenty of other titles), is set to complete a nearly $3 billion purchase of Time Inc. early next year. Known for its news magazine as well as Sports Illustrated and People, Time has long been a desired purchase for Meredith. Two other attempts to purchase the company have been reported, but this final one appears to have succeeded, with no small thanks to a $650 million infusion from the private investing arm of the Koch brothers (disclosure: the Charles Koch Foundation is an underwriter of this program). Sydney Ember, a media reporter for the New York Times, has been following the story.

"They have said this is a passive investment," said Ember in an interview with Marketplace host Kai Ryssdal. "They don't have a seat on the board, and they don't intend to influence the magazines. But if you know anything about the Kochs, they do try to sort of influence public discourse."

To hear the full interview, use the audio player above.

 

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Follow Kai Ryssdal at @kairyssdal