Regional newspapers continue to change hands in the US, where 37-year-old Louie Mullen features in two separate acquisition announcements.
Mullen has bought Eldridge, Iowa weekly the North Scott Press from the Tubbs family and acquired the Gladwin County Record & Beaverton Clarion in Michigan from Adams Publishing Group.
Bill Tubbs – who has been publisher at Eldridge since 1971 – will continue a weekly column, while wife Linda is retiring. They are selling the North Scott Press, the Wilton-Durant Advocate News in Wilton, and the West Liberty Index.
John Cribb of Cribb, Cope & Potts, which represented the Tubbs, says the search for new owners included potential buyers in the local communities, as well as nationally.
Mullen – who already owned three newspapers in Iowa – is also buying the Gladwin County Record & Beaverton Clarion from Adams Publishing, who were represented by Dirks, Van Essen & April.
Established in 1877, the Record claims one of the industry’s first websites, having gone online with community news in 1997.
Adams said Gladwin – while an important singular market – did not align geographically align with any of the 15 strategic multimedia operations it had acquired and built over the past nine years.
Mullen, part of a second-generation newspaper family, now owns more than 30 newspapers in seven states, stretching from the upper Midwest to the West Coast, and sits on the board of the National Newspaper Association.
Dirks, Van Essen & April have also announced the acquisition by Paxton Media Group of five mastheads which Cleveland Newspapers and Cookeville Newspapers had owned for more than 65 and 47 years respectively.
They are the Cleveland Daily Banner and Cookeville Herald-Citizen in Tennessee, the Cartersville Daily Tribune News, and Chatsworth Times in Georgia, and the Jasper Daily Mountain Eagle in Alabama. Other publications in the group include Walker Magazine, 385 Magazine, Bradley Essential, and Discover Bartow.
Family-owned Paxton now owns more than 100 newspapers across the Midwest and Southeast.
Cribb, Cope and Potts have also announced the sale of the Perlberg family’s Sunrise Printing & Publishing stable of three weekly newspapers to CherryRoad Media.
They are the Arenac County Independent in Standish, the Ogemaw County Herald in West Branch and the Oscoda County Herald in Mio.
CherryRoad Media is another relative newcomer to newspaper ownership, having purchased its first masthead in November 2020. With Sunrise, it now has 67 across 11 states.