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Time's Ripp Picked to Head Publishing Spinoff

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Former Time executive Joseph Ripp got the nod from Time Warner (TWX - Get Report) Chief Executive Jeff Bewkes to head the publishing company when it's spun off later this year.

The selection closes one of the most closely watched executive appointments in U.S. publishing as industry observers debated whom Bewkes might select to run the country's largest magazine publisher. Time Warner announced the spinoff in March, following the lead of News Corp. which recently separated its publishing business from its television and film units to form two separately-traded companies.

Ripp will take over in September, replacing Time CEO Laura Lang who told Bewkes in March that she wouldn't continue to lead the company after the spinoff.

Time Warner shares were rising 0.9% to $62.31 in mid-day trading. the shares have gained 31% this year.

Ripp, who currently heads OneSource Information Services, a company research service, last worked at Time Warner in 2004, holding positions in finance, technology and operations. Ripp was Time Warner's finance chief from 1999 to 2001 before becoming vice-chairman at America Online.

"Joe is a seasoned executive who has been immersed in the intersection of digital, advertising and publishing for the past decade," Bewkes said in a press statement. "We have great confidence that Joe will maximize Time Inc.'s iconic brands, scale and industry-leading position to create value for its stockholders."

After leaving Time Warner, Ripp also served as chairman of Journal Register, the newspaper company that filed for Ch. 11 bankruptcy last year.

The spin-off Time, which includes its flagship magazine as well as People, Fortuneand Entertainment Weekly, would become the third entity that Bewkes has spun-off since becoming CEO in 2008. Time Warner Cable and AOL Inc., were spun-off in 2007 and 2009 respectively.

Written by Leon Lazaroff in New York

>To contact the writer of this article, click here: LeonLazaroff.>.

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