BUSINESS
01/20/2016 08:53 pm ET

Jeff Bezos Gets Rave Reviews From Washington Post Veteran

Lally Weymouth said the Amazon CEO has done a "fantastic job" with the paper.

While one tech giant admitted crushing defeat in the publishing world this month, another is enjoying enthusiastic thumbs-up from an industry veteran.

Elizabeth "Lally" Weymouth, a senior associate editor at The Washington Post whose family owned the paper for 80 years, told The Huffington Post that the new owner, Amazon founder Jeff Bezos, is doing a "fantastic job." 

"I think the spirit and morale is really high at the Post," Weymouth told Caroline Modarressy-Tehrani at the World Economic Forum Annual Meeting in Davos, Switzerland. 

But Bezos' success extends beyond morale and the paper's "beautiful" new offices. The Post recently edged out The New York Times in online traffic, a huge win for the historic runner-up to the Gray Lady.

"He's using his knowledge of technology to help the paper," Weymouth said, noting that the decision to hire more engineers has contributed to the paper's growth in online readership. 

Bezos' success is that much more noteworthy because journalism, Weymouth said, is "a lethal business." And she should know.

Weymouth's family, the Grahams, owned the paper for generations. Her parents, Katharine and Philip Graham, were both publishers of the Post, as was her daughter, Katherine Weymouth, who was at the helm when Bezos bought the paper in 2013. 

Weymouth, 71, said Bezos' "clever" decision to run the paper as a private company -- it was previously public -- has been especially helpful, since he doesn't report to shareholders.  

"He's putting money into it," Weymouth said. "He can afford it." 

Now if only someone would do the same for The New Republic. The magazine's owner, Facebook co-founder Chris Hughes, said earlier this month he's selling the liberal politics and policy magazine nearly four years after purchasing it. 

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