Gannett to Acquire Central Newspapers
Posted on June 28, 2000Gannett Co., Inc. and Central Newspapers, Inc. have announced that they have entered into a definitive agreement for Gannett's acquisition of Central Newspapers, Inc. for an approximate cash purchase price of $2.6 billion. Gannett also will assume or retire all of Central's existing debt. Closing is expected to occur in the third quarter of 2000, subject to obtaining applicable governmental approvals.
Central Newspapers owns The Arizona Republic, The Indianapolis Star and three other dailies in Indiana and one daily in Louisiana. Central also owns a direct marketing business; CNI Ventures, Central's internet and technology investment management group; as well as other related media and information businesses, including 23% of BrassRing, Inc.
In announcing the offer, Douglas H. McCorkindale, president and chief executive officer of Gannett said: ``We are extremely pleased that the Central properties will become part of Gannett. We have held these properties in high esteem for many years and look forward to operating them in keeping with the high standards established by the Pulliam family. This transaction affords Gannett the rare opportunity to add two flagship newspapers to our operations. We are excited about expanding our presence in Phoenix, the 14th largest market in the United States and the fastest growing metro market in the United States. We also welcome the chance to enter Indianapolis, the 29th largest U.S. market. We consider ourselves very fortunate to be able to add such high caliber people and operations to our Company.''
Louis A. ``Chip'' Weil III, chairman, president and chief executive officer of Central said: ``It is increasingly clear that size and scale are key considerations in the long-term success of a newspaper operator, and our agreement announced today is a reflection of that. We believe this transaction demonstrates the substantial value that Central Newspapers has created and the overall strength of our operations. Our management and employees have a great deal of pride in what we've built, and we believe that Gannett, with its strong operating capability and its enormous commitment to newspapers, will continue to enhance the value of Central's businesses. Our trust is in Gannett to ensure that our commitment to community, product and employees will continue to grow and prosper under their ownership.''