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商业 - 传媒与文化

《财富》独家专访默多克:关于离婚、接班人和传媒帝国的未来

Pattie Sellers 2014年04月11日

这是默多克5年以来首次接受媒体深度采访,开诚布公地谈到了如何重振事业,召回大儿子拉克伦,同邓文迪的离婚,以及如何度过近些年的艰难时光揭开“新篇章”。

    鲁伯特•默多克在接受《财富》杂志(Fortune)独家采访时说:“我今年1月和2月运气很不好。我在旧金山摔了一跤,碰到了头。”《财富》杂志将深度报道这位媒体巨头最近经历的一系列挑战。

    默多克在今天先行发布的专访中(特写文章将刊登在4月28日出版的《财富》杂志上)谈到了他的跨国媒体集团为什么要分拆为两个上市公司,如何修复同成年子女的紧张关系,如何召回大儿子拉克伦重返商界,以及为什么要高调结束同邓文迪长达14年的婚姻。

    即使正在面对旗下英国报纸窃听丑闻引发的诉讼,默多克(今年3月份即将年满83岁)仍然精力充沛,对自己的麻烦直言不讳,甚至还对Facebook、迈克尔•布隆伯格和2016年总统大选等问题发表了看法。

    《财富》杂志资深编辑帕蒂•塞勒斯3月末在曼哈顿的新闻集团(News Corp.)办公室采访了默多克。谈话要点如下:

    默多克谈到召回长子拉克伦担任新闻集团和21世纪福克斯(21st Century Fox)的非执行董事长的过程。拉克伦2005年因为同管理高层关系紧张而离开公司。21世纪福克斯拥有去年夏天与核心报纸业务拆分的电视与电影资产。去年七月份,在艾伦公司(Allen & Co.)于爱达荷州太阳谷召开的会议上,默多克在用餐时说:“拉克伦和(我的小儿子)詹姆斯与我就如何组团协作进行了一次非常严肃的谈话。我们谈了两三个小时。拉克伦并不是不会再回来。问题在于,我们如何共同合作。” 默多克还谈到如何缓和同女儿伊丽莎白的关系,他希望女儿在公司内发挥重要作用。默多克的两家公司市值超过800亿美元,默多克自己持有40%的股份,拥有控股权并对公司发号施令。

    谈到报纸如何适应数字化时代问题时,他预计亏损的《纽约邮报》(New York Post)也许能以数字形式继续存在10年。他估计《华尔街日报》(Wall Street Journal)的印刷版能维持更长时间。2007年,默多克入主道琼斯(Dow Jones)时收购了《华尔街日报》。

    除了道琼斯的路透商业资讯(Factiva)外,默多克还一直在努力建立其他数据服务。他对前纽约市市长迈克尔•布隆伯格本人及其价值百亿的公司都大加赞赏。默多克说:“迈克尔占据了事实上的垄断地位。这是一个非常小的市场,也是一个非常高端的市场。我记得有一天他曾打电话给我,抱怨《纽约时报》中的一些批评意见。我说:‘我刚刚读了《彭博视点》(Bloomberg View),里面的观点绝对伤害了我。’他说:‘哈,没人会读那里面的文章。’”

    默多克解释了他为何会在电视体育上押下重注,推出福克斯体育1台(Fox Sports 1):因为ESPN是“一座金矿”。它的价值甚至超过了福克斯新闻台(Fox News)。这并不意味着福克斯新闻台令默多克感到不安,他说:“世界上没有一家有线电视公司会砍掉它,除非他们想让自己的房子被人烧掉。”在被问到福克斯新闻台有时候的极右观点会否破坏美国政治、甚至伤害共和党时,他的回答是:“我认为它绝对是挽救了共和党。””

    对于2016年美国总统大选,默多克相信“将在四五个人之间角逐。”他最看好杰布•布什(小布什之弟——译注)和保罗•瑞安。来自威斯康辛州的保守众议员瑞安曾担任众议院预算委员会(House Budget Committee)主席。默多克说:“瑞安绝对是我见过的最正直的人。”

    默多克还谈到为说服梦工厂(DreamWorks)CEO斯塔西•斯奈德加入20世纪福克斯(20th Century Fox)所做的努力。他谈到了20世纪福克斯拍摄两部(没错,是两部!)《阿凡达》续集的计划。此外,他还谈到了自己在60年的全球扩张过程中最大的失望:2005年以5.8亿美元收购的MySpace,最终惨败于Facebook。默多克说:“我认为这是我一生最大的败笔。”

    个人生活方面,默多克首次公开谈到了离婚时间,讲了他看到邓文迪在日记中记录其他男人时的感受(“我当时很震惊”),还有他打算如何翻开“新的篇章”。他谈到最近在加州购买的13英亩的葡萄园,还有10,000平方英尺的曼哈顿新公寓。公寓的价格恐怕只有亿万富翁才会欣然接受:5,725万美元。(财富中文网)

    译者:刘进龙/汪皓

    

    "I had a very bad month in January and February. I had a fall in San Francisco. I fell on my head," says Rupert Murdoch in an exclusive interview with Fortune Magazine that covers the gamut of the media titan's latest challenges.

    In the Q&A, released today and featured in Fortune's April 28 issue, Murdoch talks about splitting his global media conglomerate into two public companies, struggling to repair frayed relationships with his grown children, luring eldest son Lachlan back into the business, and enduring a high-profile divorce from Wendi Deng, after a 14-year marriage.

    And even as he's coped with legal woes related to the phone-hacking scandal in his British newspaper business, Murdoch, who turned 83 in March, comes across as vigorous, candid about his troubles -- and ever opinionated about a broad array of topics from Facebook (FB) to Michael Bloomberg to the 2016 Presidential race.

    Fortune senior editor at large Pattie Sellers talked with Murdoch in his News Corp. office in Manhattan in late March. Some highlights of the interview:

    Murdoch reveals how he coaxed son Lachlan, who left News Corp. in 2005 over tensions with senior management, to return as non-executive chairman of both News Corp. (NWS) and 21st Century Fox (FOX), which holds the TV and movie assets that separated from the core newspaper operations last summer. Over a meal at the Allen & Co. conference last July in Sun Valley, Idaho, "Lachlan and [younger son] James and I had a very serious talk about how we can work as a team," Murdoch says. "We had two or three hours together. Lachlan was not not going to come back. It was a question of how we would work together?" Murdoch also talks about easing tensions with his daughter Elisabeth and his hopes for her to play a major role inside his companies, which have a combined stock-market value of more than $80 billion. Murdoch owns almost 40%, controls the voting stock, and calls the shots.

    About adapting his newspapers to the digital age, Murdoch says that the New York Post, his money-losing daily tabloid, may exist only in digital form in 10 years. He expects the Wall Street Journal, which he bought as part of Dow Jones in 2007, to remain in print form longer.

    While he's struggled to build data services beyond Dow Jones' Factiva, Murdoch greatly admires Bloomberg – both ex-New York mayor Michael Bloomberg and the multi-billion business he created. "Mike's got a virtual monopoly there," says Murdoch. "It's a very small market, a very elite market. I remember when he rang me one day to complain about some criticism in the Post. I said, 'I've just read Bloomberg View, and it absolutely lacerated me.' He said, 'Oh, nobody reads that.'

    Murdoch explains why he's betting big on TV sports, with the new Fox Sports 1 cable network: ESPN is "a goldmine. It's an even bigger goldmine than Fox News." Not that Murdoch frets about Fox News: "No cable company in the world is going to drop it unless they want their houses burnt down," he says, Asked if Fox News' sometimes extreme right-wing views may have denigrated the U.S. political process and even hurt the Republican party, he replies, "I think it has absolutely saved it."

    The 2016 Presidential election, Murdoch believes, "is between four or five people." He ranks Jeb Bush and Paul Ryan at the top of his list. Ryan, the conservative Congressman from Wisconsin who chairs the House Budget Committee, "is the straightest arrow I've ever met," he says.

    Murdoch talks about trying to woo DreamWorks CEO Stacey Snider to 20th Century Fox, the film studio's plans for two (yes, two!) sequels to Avatar, and perhaps his greatest disappointment in almost 60 years of global empire-building: MySpace, which he bought in 2005 for $580 million, failed vs. Facebook. "It think it was one of our great screw-ups of all time," Murdoch says.

    And on the personal front, Murdoch opens up for the first time publicly about his divorce, how he felt when he read Wendi Deng's alleged diary entries about other men ("I was shocked") and how he is now moving into "a new chapter." He talks about the 13-acre vineyard that he recently bought in California and his new 10,000-square-foot Manhattan apartment that came with a price tag only a billionaire can love: $57.25 million.

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