I don’t think we’ve paid enough attention to what Murdoch and News Corp. are trying to do in education, so it’s good that the Times does here:
While Mr. Klein still worked for Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg, Mr. Murdoch and Mr. Klein became close friends. They talked frequently about the state of public schools and Mr. Klein was lured to News Corporation with the promise that he could use the company’s deep coffers to put in place his vision of revolutionizing K-12 education. Mr. Murdoch has said he would be “thrilled” if education were to account for 10 percent of News Corporation’s $34 billion in annual revenue in the next five years.
That’s worth keeping a close eye on.
— Reuters has another good scoop on Chesapeake CEO Aubrey McClendon’s billion-dollar loans.
Just a few weeks ago, McClendon borrowed another $450 million from a private equity firm called EIG Global Energy Partners that was doing business with Chesapeake. That brought his borrowings since 2009 to $1.6 billion—most of it from EIG.
The deal was initially intended to be significantly larger, up to $750 million, said the person familiar with the transaction. It was scaled back last week after the Chesapeake board announced the early end to the well-stake perk, which is now slated to conclude in June 2014.
The newest financing for McClendon closed shortly before EIG joined with other investment firms and hedge funds, such as TPG Capital and Magnetar Capital, in purchasing preferred shares in a newly formed Chesapeake subsidiary that has an interest in some of the company’s wells. EIG invested $100 million in that deal, called CHK Cleveland Tonkawa, which raised $1.25 billion for Chesapeake…
In his April 23 letter to clients, (CEO R. Blair) Thomas of EIG defended the two prior loans to McClendon, writing: “The crux of the story as it relates to EIG seems to be that we got too good a deal for our investors.”