During his tenure as managing editor at The Washington Post, Martin Baron faced a persistent problem.

Jeff Bezos bought The Post for $250 million in 2013, less than a year after Mr. Baron took over. Mr Bezos, who came to media ownership after founding Amazon and redoing buying, wanted his editor-in-chief to transform the paper from a regional news organization into a truly global one.

But Mr. Bezos, whose representatives watched the budget, did not believe The Post needed to add many new editors to accomplish that task. Reporters were classified as “direct” employees and editors as “indirect” – and his preference was to keep the “indirect” numbers down.

So, Mr. Baron came up with a solution, according to his upcoming memoir.

“To avoid alarms up the line, my deputies and I would strip the word ‘editor’ from proposed new positions whenever possible,” Mr. Baron writes. “‘Analyst’ or ‘strategist’ was among the limited set of solutions.”

These days, Mr. Bezos knows more about the news business. And in recent months, he has become more involved with The Post’s operations, stepping in as staff morale crashed and business struggled.

Mr. Bezos said he wants The Post to be profitable, but probably won’t reach that goal this year.

The Post is on pace to lose about $100 million in 2023, according to two people with knowledge of the company’s finances; two other people briefed on the situation said the company expects to miss its ad revenue forecasts this year. They spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss internal financial matters. The Post has struggled to increase the number of its paying customers since the 2020 election, when its digital subscriptions peaked at three million. It now has about 2.5 million.

A spokesman for Mr. Bezos declined to make him available for an interview. Patty Stonesifer, The Post’s interim chief executive, said Mr Bezos was happy with “every dollar invested” in the company. One person familiar with Mr. Bezos’ plans said The Post planned for 2023 to be “a year for investment.”

“I am very excited about what we can do here at The Washington Post in the next decade,” Ms. Stonesifer said in a statement. “Jeff’s second decade of ownership of The Post should be even more exciting.”

Mr. Bezos’ purchase of The Washington Post ended decades of ownership by the Graham family — which ran the paper through its legendary coverage of Watergate and the Pentagon Papers — and ushered in a new era of expansion under one of the world’s most famous entrepreneurs. In a meeting with staff shortly after his purchase, Mr. Bezos encouraged Post employees to experiment digitally, taking advantage of the “gifts of the internet,” such as global reach, that have made Amazon a phenomenal success. He provided ample financial support to expand the newsroom.

Mr. Bezos weighed in on product decisions and hired Fred Ryan, a former chief executive of Politico, to serve as publisher to replace Katharine Weymouth, a scion of the Graham family. He kept Mr. Baron in place as The Post’s editor-in-chief until his retirement in 2021, often calling him the best journalism tutor an owner could ask for. He helped select Sally Buzbee as Mr. Baron’s successor, inviting her to his home in Washington’s upscale Kalorama neighborhood.

But after an initial interest that lasted several years, and after his decision to step down as head of Amazon, Mr. Bezos has withdrawn somewhat from The Post, according to two people familiar with his interactions with the newsroom.

That changed in January, after Ms. Buzbee spoke with Mr. Bezos and delivered an urgent message: Morale was low at The Post. Much of it, she said, stemmed from missteps by the paper’s chief, Mr. Ryan, according to two people familiar with her remarks.

Ms. Buzbee’s relationship with Mr. Ryan was strained. He accused Cameron Barr, her top deputy, of leaking information about The Post’s operations to the press, according to three people familiar with his comments, and sought his ouster. Through a spokesman, Mr Ryan denied accusing Mr Barr of leaking information and trying to remove him. The Post declined to comment on the situation. Two people familiar with the matter said there was no evidence to support the leaking claims.

Many at The Post grew frustrated with what they viewed as a stunted business culture that Mr. Ryan presided over, and conveyed these concerns to Ms. Buzbee.

The Post was also bleeding talent. In the past year, several prominent reporters, including Pulitzer Prize winners Eli Saslow, Robert Samuels and Stephanie McCrummen, have left, along with top editors including Mr. Barr; Steven Ginsberg, longtime editor; David Malitz, senior culture editor; and Sharif Durhams, deputy managing editor.

There was a similar exodus among top Postal executives, including Shailesh Prakash, chief information officer; Joy Robins, chief revenue officer; Kat Downs Mulder, chief product officer; and Kristine Coratti Kelly, chief communications officer. (Ms. Robins, Mr. Saslow, Mr. Malitz and Mr. Ginsberg joined The New York Times Company.)

In January, Mr. Bezos rarely appeared in the newsroom. He sat in on a morning news briefing, and later in the day he met with a handful of Post reporters. During some of his meetings, several Post employees expressed concerns about Mr. Ryan’s missteps and the direction of the paper.

In June, Mr. Ryan announced his resignation, telling staff that he planned to start the Center for Public Civility, a new project of the Ronald Reagan Presidential Foundation, where he is chairman of the board. Mr. Bezos has agreed to provide funding for the center.

In an interview with The Times last month, Mr. Ryan said he had “many conversations” with Mr. Bezos about the new organization.

Mr. Bezos appointed Ms. Stonesifer, a friend who has served on Amazon’s board for more than two decades, to run The Post in Mr. Ryan’s absence and serve as interim chief executive while the search for a permanent one was underway.

Ms. Stonesifer — who does not take a salary for the work — has already begun to put her stamp on The Post. She often meets with staff members, asking for feedback on what she calls “flowers,” things people are proud of and want to keep growing, and “weeds,” things people want to address.

On July 11, she and Mr. Ryan hired Alex MacCallum, a veteran of The Times and CNN, to be The Post’s chief revenue officer, and named Vineet Khosla as the paper’s chief technology officer. Ms. Stonesifer has also repeatedly told employees that Mr. Bezos is fully committed to the business and sees the newspaper as a legacy for his family.

Mr. Bezos personally considered an experimental project being developed for The Post’s opinion section, which is run by David Shipley, a former Bloomberg editor whom he helped recruit. The initiative — which does not yet have an official name — is exploring a forum for readers in cities across the United States to submit their own opinions and comments.

Mr. Bezos told confidantes that the new effort, which is being developed with help from former New York magazine editor Adam Moss, is an opportunity to reach readers who may have tuned in to the news, according to four people familiar with its development. Mr. Bezos had regular meetings with Mr. Shipley to discuss the project.

Other changes that are planned at The Post include a relaunch of the 54-year-old Style section in September. The overhaul will include an online redesign, according to three people with knowledge of the plan.

Mr. Ryan’s exit is seen among staffers as a victory for Ms. Buzbee, whose relationship with The Post’s editorial staff has been strained at times since she joined from The Associated Press two years ago. The Post continued to deliver high-quality journalism and in May won two Pulitzer Prizes for its reporting, while a book written by two Post reporters received the overall non-fiction award.

Ms. Buzbee now meets regularly with Ms. Stonesifer and appears to be strengthened by that collaboration, according to people at the newsroom, who are also encouraged by Ms. Stonesifer’s close ties to Mr. Bezos.

“There’s a sense of hope that we haven’t had in a long time,” said Sally Quinn, a longtime Post journalist and the widow of Ben Bradlee, a former editor-in-chief of The Post.

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