Merger of GateHouse Media and Gannett

“After much anticipation, the two largest news publishers in the country have announced that they will merge. The owner of GateHouse Media, New Media Investment Group, will acquire Gannett. Both companies bring to the table strong local brands that have produced quality journalism that is highly valued in their communities. The merger will position the new company – which is keeping the Gannett name – to address the challenges and opportunities of the digital media sphere.

Alliance President & CEO David Chavern stated, “We congratulate GateHouse and Gannett, and we look forward to working with them to fight for the future of news publishing.  At a time when there is a lot of focus on the challenges facing the news industry, it’s encouraging to see two companies who are ready to face them head-on and are thinking strategically about sustaining the future of journalism.”

According to USA TODAY, there are goals to reduce the companies’ costs and position the new company to better compete with the duopoly of Facebook and Google, who currently dominate the online ecosystem.

“Consolidation is a response to the current challenges in the digital market for news. Facebook and Google should pay close attention and understand that, one way or another, we need to get to a system of fair compensation for news content,” added Chavern.”

The statement can also be found on our website at https://www.newsmediaalliance.org/statement-gatehouse-gannett-merger/.”

Source: News & Tech, 2019

Rhode Island Suburban Newspapers buys California paper

“Rhode Island Suburban Newspapers was approved by a federal bankruptcy judge to buy The Union Democrat and its and its building in Sonora, California, the paper reported.

Judge Trish M. Brown in Portland, Oregon, approved the sale. Ownership was set to transfer on July 31.

The purchase follows the January Chapter 11 bankruptcy filing of Western Communications, in which the company listed citing $29 million in debt. Western Communications considered restructuring, but opted to liquidate, the paper reported.

Oregon-based EO Media purchased Western Communications’ papers in La Grande and Baker City (Oregon) in June.

Pending is the sale of the Western Communications’ paper in Bend, The Bulletin.

Western Communications has garnered around $3.5 million in paper and real estate sales, according to The Union Democrat.

Western Communications’ headquarters in Bend will be the final property to be sold, according to The Union Democrat.”

Source: News & Tech, 2019 

ING 2019 conference discount, signed books available

“Newspaper executives will get a 15 percent early bird discount if they register for the ING 2019 conference by Aug. 31.

The International Newspaper Group calls its event “the only leadership networking event for newspaper production, operations and logistics leaders.”

According to organizers, “ING is the one gathering where every single production exec attending will bring home information, answers and contacts crucial to the well-being of their operations.”

The event is taking place Oct. 4­–5 at the Wyndham Grand Chicago Riverfront.

ING is partnered with PRINT 19 and news executives who attend ING 2019 get a free pass to PRINT 19 as well. PRINT 19 is happening Oct. 3­–5 at Chicago’s McCormick Place North.

The first 75 newspaper executives who register by Aug. 31 will get an autographed copy of Keni Thomas’ book “Get it On: What It Means to Lead the Way.”

Thomas, who’s giving a keynote at the event on Oct. 5, is an author, speaker, musician, former U.S. Army Ranger and the recipient of the Bronze Star for valor. Thomas was a member of the battalion that was in an 18-hour firefight in Somalia recounted in the book and movie “Black Hawk Down.””

Source: News & Tech, 2019.

Kahana buys North Carolina newspaper group

“Leslie Kahana is the new owner of Lake Norman Publications, a group of suburban Charlotte (North Carolina) newspapers, the company’s Herald Citizen reported.

The move comes four months after Kahana took a position as publisher at the company.

The deal with Wisconsin-based American Hometown Publishing was set to go into effect Aug. 1.

Lake Norman Publications is headquartered in Huntersville and has three weekly papers: the Herald Citizen, which covers northern Mecklenburg County communities; the Mooresville Citizen, in Iredell County; and the Denver Citizen, which covers part of Lincoln County.

LNP’s Mountain Island Monitor is a monthly whose coverage area includes parts of Mecklenburg and Gaston counties. The four papers have a combined circulation of 54,000.

Kahana is a Michigan native who came on board with Lake Norman Publications in spring after more than ten years as director of advertising at the Chattanooga Times Free Press (Tennessee).”

Source: News & Tech, 2019 

ImPRESSions supplies press to California printer

“ImPRESSions Worldwide has entered into an agreement to supply a five-unit press to Delta Web Printing in Sacramento, California. Production is near completion at imPRESSions’s Pacific Northwest headquarters and will be ready to transport this week. Once at Delta Web, imPRESSions precision installers will have 45 days to complete the press installation, which includes five Community units, one SSC folder and four Megtec splicers.

The two companies have a long history of doing business together. Delta Web, a commercial printer specializing in book manufacturing, has been in business since 1991 and made its first purchase from imPRESSions for four splicers in 2013.

Now in its 25th year, imPRESSions Worldwide offers a large inventory of second-hand single-wide newspaper and commercial presses and auxiliary equipment. ImPRESSions has handled more than 1,500 press projects and has delivered to more than 50 countries, the company says. ImPRESSions is headquartered in Burlington, Washington, and also has a facility in Tupelo, Mississippi.”

Source: News & Tech, 2o19

Pew reports layoff numbers for 2018

“Around a quarter of papers with an average Sunday circulation of 50,000 or more saw layoffs in 2018, a new Pew Research Center analysis says.

Around one-third of papers in the same circulation range underwent layoffs in 2017. The quantity of jobs typically cut by newspapers in 2018 tended to be higher than in 2017, according to Pew.

Mid-market papers most commonly experienced job cuts in 2018, unlike in 2017, when the biggest papers more often had layoffs. Digital news operations also saw layoffs: last year, 14 percent of the highest-traffic digital-native news operations saw layoffs, falling from one-in-five in the year before.”

Source: News & Tech, 2019