Tuesday, March 14, 2006

Sold... and Sold Again

The anxiety continues here in the River City: after snapping up Knight-Ridder, new owner McClatchy announces that it seeks to sell off 12 of the company's outlets, including the Philadelphia Inquirer and Daily News....

In addition to the papers in Philadelphia and St. Paul, McClatchy also intends to sell the San Jose Mercury News; the Akron Beacon Journal in Ohio; the Times Leader in Wilkes-Barre, Pa.; the Aberdeen American News in South Dakota; the Grand Forks Herald in North Dakota; The News-Sentinel in Ft. Wayne, Indiana; the Contra Costa Times and The Monterey County Herald in California and the Duluth News Tribune in Minnesota.

Following the deal and the sale of the 12 Knight Ridder papers, McClatchy will end up with 32 daily newspapers and roughly 50 non-daily publications, making it the second-largest newspaper publisher in the nation following Gannett Co., publisher of USA Today....

In recent years, McClatchy has shown a clear preference for one-newspaper towns in growth markets.

Those criteria fit certain Knight Ridder papers, such as the Charlotte Observer, but not others, such as The Inquirer, the Daily News, or the Akron Beacon Journal.

"We care who we sell to, we care about these papers," Pruitt said of the newspapers McClatchy plans to sell.