The two news outlets are considering a structure whereby Tina Brown, co-founder and co-owner of The Daily Beast, would become editor of Newsweek while maintaining her current editorial duties at The Daily Beast, The Wall Street Journal said without naming its sources.
Brown would have two bosses under the proposed arrangement: Sidney Harman, who recently bought Newsweek, and Barry Diller, CEO of Daily Beast owner IAC/InterActive Corp.
Newsweek is set to lose at least $20 million this year and has already lost some of its best-known writers. The Daily Beast, which averages 4.6 million visitors a month, could provide an infusion of editorial talent.
The Daily Beast is set to lose about $10 million this year, though executives expect it to turn a profit in two years' time.
No deal has been agreed regarding the merger.