What the GateHouse/Gannett deal means for PR pros

The top two U.S. newspaper chains are fusing as one media powerhouse, in hopes of bolstering an industry in decline. Still, it probably won’t mean better coverage for your local news story.

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The newspaper market hasn’t recovered—but a mega-deal might help some local papers stay afloat.

The two biggest newspaper companies in the U.S.—Gannett and GateHouse Media—are consolidating to create one media behemoth, with an eye to reducing overhead and preserving their papers’ profits.

CNN reported:

New Media Investment Group, the parent company of GateHouse Media, said that it had arrived at an agreement to acquire Gannett (GCI) for a combination of stock and cash.

Both companies have vast portfolios. Gannett publishes USA Today, in addition to many well-known local newspapers. GateHouse Media operates in 612 markets in 39 states.

Gannett shareholders will own 49.5% of the new company, and New Media shareholders will own 50.5%, the press release announcing the merger said.

The move will probably do little to reverse local newspapers’ downward trend.

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