Champion Media LLC has acquired the North Carolina and South Carolina print, digital and local assets of Civitas Media LLC. The acquisition includes five daily newspapers and 17 weekly newspapers. The announcement was made by Champion Media CEO Scott T. Champion. Financial terms were not disclosed.
Dirks, Van Essen & Murray, a media merger and acquisition firm based in Santa Fe, New Mexico, represented Civitas Media in the transaction.
The daily newspapers included in the deal were the Lumberton Robesonian, Mount Airy News, Rockingham Daily Journal, Clinton Sampson Independent and Laurinburg Exchange. The weeklies included: Jefferson Post, Your Carolina Connection, Elizabethtown Bladen Journal, Wadesboro Anson Record, Surry Scene, Elkin Tribune, Elkin Advertiser, Yadkin Ripple, Stokes News, Pilot Mountain News, Carroll News, Union Times, Union Grapevine, Newberry Observer, Newberry Shopper, Easley Progress and Pickens Sentinel.
The acquisition expands Champion Media’s stable of news properties to six dailies and 21 weeklies in North Carolina, South Carolina, Ohio, Minnesota and Virginia. Scott Champion commented, “This investment strengthens Champion Media’s commitment to the local communities of North Carolina, South Carolina and Virginia, serving as a local news source. The strength of local newspapers is as vital today as it was 50 years ago. We are proud of all the employees who come together each day to bring their communities a credible news product, either in print or digital.”
The new properties have a combined weekly circulation of approximately 225,000 and a monthly digital reach of more than four million unique visitors. Most of the newspapers have a rich history of serving their communities for well over 100 years. Champion added, “Civitas Media is a leading community newspaper group servicing many local markets in 11 states. Civitas newspapers have been providing leading news coverage for decades and we intend to engage with its employees to continue enhancing our content and coverage across the North Carolina and South Carolina communities.”
“We are delighted to have Scott Champion, our former COO and a leading media executive in the United States, acquire Civitas’ North Carolina and South Carolina properties,” said Lior Yahalomi, CEO of Civitas. “I would like to personally thank all of our Civitas North Carolina and South Carolina employees for the many years of dedicated and professional service. I wish them a great transition in becoming an important part of the Champion Media newspaper business.”