Times-Shamrock Makes Bid for ‘Virgin Islands Daily News’

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A family-owned media company in Pennsylvania says it has submitted the winning bid for the largest newspaper in the U.S. Virgin Islands.

Times-Shamrock Communications, based in Scranton, said it has reached an agreement in principle to buy The Virgin Islands Daily News for an undisclosed price.

The purchase is subject to the approval of a bankruptcy court.

Innovative Communication Corp., the parent company of the Daily News was forced into bankruptcy after defaulting on more than $500 million in debt. A judge ordered the company to sell its assets, including the 8,500-circulation newspaper.

The newspaper reaches more than 80 percent of the people in the U.S. Virgin Islands and 20 percent in the nearby British Virgin Islands, Times-Shamrock said in a statement.

The Virgin Islands Daily News won the 1995 Pulitzer Prize for public service for its reporting on corruption in the local criminal justice system.

The paper, founded in 1930, was sold in 1979 to the Arlington, Virginia-based Gannett Co., which sold it to Innovative Communication in 1997.

Times-Shamrock owns seven daily newspapers, mostly in Pennsylvania, as well as alternative newspapers in Baltimore, Detroit, Orlando and San Antonio. It also has five radio stations and several other weekly and monthly publications.

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