William Bardeen, The New York Times’ chief strategy officer, will become the publication’s new chief financial officer, the Times announced in a release today (May 10).
In Bardeen’s strategy position, which he assumed in 2018, the executive oversaw business development, investing, financial planning and mergers and acquisitions. Since then, the Times has acquired Wordle, the word guessing game; Audm, the read-aloud feature for articles; and the Athletic, a subscription sports website.
Bardeen, 48, will begin in his new position on July 1. Roland Caputo, the current chief financial officer, announced his retirement in December and will remain with the company through September to help with the transition, according to the release.
In recent years, the Times has tried to make up for its declining print business with more offerings for digital subscribers, including bundles with games, recipes and shopping content. The company is also facing a downturned advertising market that has impacted most publications. Its ad revenue decreased 8.6 percent to $106 million from the same time last year, according to company earnings, which the Times posted today. The company’s stock is trading today at $36.63 per share, which is 33 percent lower than its 2021 peak but higher than its pre-Covid price.
“Will (Bardeen) has been a key leader within our finance organization, helping to develop and execute our transformation into a global digital-first, subscription-first business and to drive our disciplined M&A strategy,” Meredith Kopit Levien, chief executive officer, said in the statement. “Few people understand our business, strategy and marketplace like Will does, and his expertise will be critical as we advance our essential subscription strategy and build a larger and more profitable company.”
Who is William Bardeen?
Bardeen joined the Times in 2004, working in corporate development roles, including as the senior vice president for strategy and development from 2013 to 2018. In that role, he helped transform the company from a U.S. media company to a digital subscription service with global reach, according to the release. Before beginning at the Times, he worked in management consulting, focusing on early-stage media companies. He attended Harvard University and Columbia Business School, where he earned a master’s degree in finance and economics.
“I’ve dedicated most of my career to helping ensure the business and financial success of The Times, and I am honored to step into the C.F.O. role during this important time for the company,” Bardeen said in the release.
What did the Times’s former CFO accomplish?
Caputo has served as CFO since 2018, having joined the Times in 1986 as a financial analyst. Immediately before working as the company’s CFO, he had been executive vice president of the Times’s Print Products and Services Group, which manages the print newspaper.
He held a series of positions during his 37-year career at the company, including overseeing home delivery operations of newspapers across the U.S. and managing the printing facility’s production and maintenance. He also worked as chief financial officer for the newspaper from 2006 to 2008. In his most recent CFO position, he oversaw finances for the newspaper, the website and the Times’s international edition.
While Caputo was CFO, the Times increased revenue each year, except for in 2020, according to company financial documents. Net income increased each year except for 2020 and 2022. Last year, Caputo was the third highest-paid executive at the company, earning $3.45 million, according to a filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.