Philly editor joins PE firm

Last week, Philadelphia Inquirer Managing Editor Anne Gordon announced she has agreed to join Dubilier & Co. as a partner.

Gordon says that the catalyst for her move was last year’s sale by the McClatchy Co. of the Inquirer and the Philadelphia Daily News to a group of private individuals, including advertising executive Brian Tierney, homebuilder Bruce Toll and former Hamilton Lane chief Les Brun. “The acquisition was really the reason that I began thinking about how private equity figures into the state of media, and about how I might be interested in getting involved on that level,” she says.

One of her initial market contacts was Managing Partner Michael Dubilier, and she says that the two hit it off. About three or four months ago, the two began discussions about Gordon going to work for New York-based Dubilier & Co., which is in the midst of raising its second fund with an undisclosed target, according to Thomson Financial (publisher of PE Week).

Gordon will focus on media opportunities, but admits that big-city dailies will not be on the top of her shopping list. Instead, she expects to spend most of her time on digital media opportunities. She also doesn’t plan to relocate. “Philadelphia is a fabulous city, and I’m very glad to be staying here,” she said. “But I’m sure I’ll be traveling a lot more than I have been.”

Before she was appointed managing editor in 2002, Gordon served as the newspaper’s deputy managing editor for arts and features. She joined the paper in 1999.

She’s not the first journalist to enter the investment community. In the VC community, Mike Moritz, of Sequoia Capital, and Stewart Alsop, formerly of New Enterprise Associates, are two noted ex-journalists. Norman Pearlstein, former editor-in-chief of Time Inc., last year joined The Carlyle Group as a senior advisor to the firm’s global telecom and media team.