By: Press Release | W.B. Grimes & Company
The Athens (Ohio) NEWS, a twice-weekly newspaper launched in 1977 by Bruce Mitchell, is being sold to Adams Publishing Group (APG) Media of Ohio LLC, a family owned newspaper company with headquarters in Minnesota.
Mitchell and ownership partner Guy Philips called the upcoming sale, “A great fit that will insure both editorial independence and long term job security for a great staff.” The transaction is anticipated to close at the end of September. John Szefc of W.B. Grimes & Company represented the sellers in the transaction.
APG Media of Ohio also owns the local daily newspaper, The Athens Messenger, which it acquired in March of 2014 along with seven other paid distribution newspapers and three free controlled distribution publications in Southeastern, Ohio.
The Monica Neiporte, APG Media of Ohio President said, “APG will continue to operate The Athens NEWS as a free distribution publication and will operate the Messenger and The NEWS as two distinct and different editorial products independent of one another.” The Athens NEWS will continue to be headquartered in its Court Street offices, and the Messenger from its Johnson Road plant facility.”
Jane Means will continue to serve as publisher of The Athens NEWS and Terry Smith will continue as editor of the 37 year old newspaper. Mitchell and Philips will serve as consultants for the paper.
The Athens NEWS was founded in the spring of 1977 by Bruce Mitchell as a bi-weekly alternative newspaper originally sold on Athens street corners for 25 cents. After converting to a free distribution newspaper that December, it expanded to weekly in 1978 and twice weekly in 1980. Guy Philips joined the paper in 1981, became a partner in 1982 and has worked as an advertising sales consultant for the last 33 years.
For Adams, The Athens NEWS acquisition follows the July acquisition of Huckle Media located in Southern Minnesota with 10 community newspapers, 17 websites, shopping guides, magazines, a digital agency and commercial printing facilities and The Chronotype in Rice Lake, Wis.
In March, Adams acquired three divisions of American Consolidated Media located in northern Minnesota, Wisconsin, Ohio and Maryland with 34 print publications and related media operations. Local newspapers in Wisconsin include the Spooner Advocate, Sawyer County Advocate, Sawyer County Record, Ashland Daily Press, Price County Review and all related shopping guides and websites.