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    Meredith Corp's John Zieser on PE frenemies

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    Two years ago John Zieser rarely heard from private equity or venture capital firms interested in partnering on deals. Now, Zieser, who leads corporate development for the media company Meredith Corp, (NYSE:MDP) says he's having those conversations almost daily on both the traditional and new media side. And those discussion have resulted in deals. Recently Meredith - with holdings in digital, broadcast and print media, including Better Homes and Gardens, Fitness and More magazines - took at 20% stake in Real Girls Media Network alongside PE investors with an exclusive option to acquire the remaining 80%. It also aligned with the PE media fund Veronis Suhler Stevenson on early stage digital marketing and media investments. In this edition of Inside the Deal, Zieser says not only are PE and VC firms seeking strategic partners, they're structuring deals differently. "They are coming to us or other strategic partners and trying to do much more creative deals, which will not be around cost synergies or turnaround. They'll be more strategically structured." - Suzanne Stevens