Earlier today, MinnPost published an essay by a former vice president of Knight Ridder that made an audacious suggestion: Minnesota Public Radio's Bill Kling should buy the Star Tribune.
The story is sure to get a lot of pageviews, as it was linked on Romenesko, the popular media gossip site.
Strangely missing was any comment from the man himself. So we emailed Kling and asked him:
Is there any chance you would ever consider buying the Strib?
This afternoon, he responded.
I appreciate your question and it is a fair one. Unfortunately I have to reply by saying that "MPR does not comment on rumors or speculation about its business plans."
I'm sure Kling is flattered, but I wouldn't hold my breath waiting for him to take over the Strib. After all, Kling runs a $70 million operation that collects $40 million from member contributions. That's quite a different thing than the Strib, which last sold for $530 million in December 2006, and which MinnPost's own David Brauer values at a conservative $125 million.
I also doubt that Avista Capital Partners, which shelled out that $530 million, would be willing to sell it to Kling for $1, as the article's fantasy world suggests.
Hell, for a dollar, I might buy the Strib.