Facebook co-founder buys majority stake in New Republic

By Laurie Bennett

March 9, 2012 at 6:23am

Facebook co-founder Chris Hughes has taken another unpredictable step on a unique career path.

Hughes, 28, has purchased a majority stake in the 98-year-old, money-losing magazine The New Republic, assuming the titles of publisher and editor-in-chief.

Not surprising are his plans for advancing the publication’s digital presence. In a letter to readers, Hughes wrote, “In the next era of The New Republic, we will aggressively adapt to the newest information technologies without sacrificing our commitment to serious journalism.”

Chris Hughes
Chris Hughes

Hughes told The New York Times that he would revamp existing iPad and mobile applications “so they’re clearly an investment for the enterprise.”

He promised in his letter to continue the magazine’s long tradition of progressive values, but said the magazine “will above all aim to appeal to independent thinkers on the left and the right who search for fresh ideas and a deeper understanding of the challenges our world faces.”

Hughes’s future was changed forever at Harvard, where he was a roommate of Mark Zuckerberg. After helping to launch Facebook, he joined the Barack Obama presidential campaign, where he coordinated online organizing.

He has also been an entrepreneur-in-residence with the venture firm General Catalyst Partners and an adviser to communications firm GMMB, which also worked with the Obama campaign.

In 2010, he launched Jumo, a social networking site that links people with nonprofit groups. He announced last year that Jumo was merging with another organization, GOOD.

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