The owners of The New York Post and The Daily News lost out to Cablevision in the battle for Newsday on Monday, but the tabloid war may be far from over. Either paper could still strike a deal to share operations with Newsday, according to bankers and analysts.
A Cablevision executive, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said that his company might be receptive to such an arrangement.
The $650 million deal for Newsday, announced on Monday by Cablevision and the Tribune Company, which owns Newsday, settles one big question about the future of New York-area newspapers at a time of financial strain for the industry. But it raises many more questions, including what the new owners will do about an outdated Newsday printing plant, who will run the paper, and how The Daily News and The Post, the two New York City tabloids, will respond to losing the bidding war.
Rupert Murdoch and the media conglomerate he controls, the News Corporation, owner of The Post, and Mortimer B. Zuckerman, owner of The Daily News, saw merging with Newsday as a golden opportunity to cut costs -- particularly by printing some or all of Newsday on one of the other paper's presses. And each of the moguls wanted dearly to keep Newsday, a tabloid based in Melville, N.Y., on Long Island, out of the hands of the other.
"There's nothing to keep Cablevision from making some kind of deal with either News Corporation or The Daily News on production, maybe distribution, even ad sales," said John Morton, a newspaper industry analyst.