Liberty Group Buys Calif. Daily

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By: E&P Staff

Liberty Group Publishing continues to grow under its new ownership. The Northbrook, Ill.-based chain last week purchased The Daily Independent in Ridgecrest, Calif., from Swift Newspapers, the newspaper announced.

“The decision to sell the newspaper was a difficult one,” Swift President and CEO Arne Hoel said in a Daily Independent article by Laura Dobbins. He said the economy had been looking good in Ridgecrest. “The Liberty Group has considerable experience in operating newspapers in growth markets of this size,” he added.

According to the E&P International Year Book, the evening Daily Independent has a sworn circulation of 7,900 weekdays and 8,200 on Sundays.

Liberty named John Watkins, who had been publisher of the Taft (Calif.) Midway Driller, as publisher of the daily. He replaces Les Hill, who is retiring.

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