For the first time in nearly 20 years, the Los Angeles Times on Monday officially returned to local ownership as billionaire Dr. Patrick Soon-Shiong completed his $500 million purchase of the publication, as well as The San Diego-Union Tribune and the rest of the California News Group.
The Los Angeles Times building is seen in downtown Los Angeles, the United States, on June 18, 2018. For the first time in nearly 20 years, the Los Angeles Times on Monday officially returned to local ownership as billionaire Dr. Patrick Soon-Shiong completed his 500-million-U.S.-dollar purchase of the publication, as well as the San Diego-Union Tribune and the rest of the California News Group. (Photo: Xinhua)
The deal, which was announced Feb. 7, returns the Los Angeles Times to local ownership after 18 turbulent years under Chicago control.
The Los Angeles Times was previously owned by Tronc, an American newspaper print and online media publishing company based in Chicago, Illinois. The company announced its intention to sell the Los Angeles paper back in February.
"I believe that fake news is the cancer of our times and social media the vehicles for metastasis," Soon-Shiong said. "The California News Group will continue to play its pivotal role in our communities, from Los Angeles to San Diego, projecting out to the world."
The 65-year-old is a surgeon, entrepreneur, philanthropist and part owner of the Los Angeles Lakers, the professional basketball team. According to Forbes, as the founder and CEO of California-based firm NantHealth, Soon-Shiong's wealth now stands at an estimated $7.8 billion.
The local biotech billionaire is also an immigrant, born in South Africa to Chinese immigrant parents who fled China during Japanese occupation in the course of World War II.
His life story, growing up in South Africa as the son of immigrants and then making it big as a doctor in Los Angeles, resonates in this city of immigrants.
The Los Angeles Times is a daily newspaper published in Los Angeles since 1881. It's the fourth most widely distributed newspaper in the United States.