The New York Times to purchase sports news site The Athletic for $550M US

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The New York Times Co. is buying sports news site The Athletic for $550 million US. It’s the Times’ latest move in its strategy to expand its audience of paying subscribers as the newspaper print ads business fades.

The Times gained millions of subscribers during the Trump presidency and the pandemic, keeping it on track for its goal of 10 million by 2025. As of the most recent quarter, it had nearly 8.4 million.

According to The Times, the purchase is expected to close in the first quarter of 2022 and The Athletic will operate as separately run subsidiary.

The Athletic’s website says it has over 400 editorial employees, making it a major acquisition for The Times, whose newsroom stands at more than 2,000. Digital media outlets have been consolidating recently to help them compete with tech giants like Google and Facebook.

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