Amazon founder Jeff Bezos has purchased the Washington Post for $250 million. It is a personal acquisition for the web entrepreneur; Amazon is not involved.
Publisher Katharine Weymouth made the announcement at a staff meeting Monday. She will stay on as publisher, and editor Martin Baron will also retain his job.
Bezos, who is worth $25 billion, also bought the Washington Post Company's other newspapers. The company's non-newspaper properties are not being sold.
Post Co. CEO Donald Graham, whose family has owned the Post for generations, said in a statement that the economics of the print industry led to the decision.
The company's newspaper division has been facing tremendous financial struggles in recent years; in the first half of 2013 alone, it lost $49.3 million.
Even so, the Post is not just another newspaper, and the Grahams are one of the last links to an era when most papers were run by families, not corporations.
The Grahams were viewed as owners that put journalism before profit, and their Watergate coverage is still seen as the high-water mark of U.S. journalism.
The decision to sell the paper is undoubtedly historic - the "end of an era" if ever there was one - regardless of what Bezos plans to do with his acquisition.