Star Democrat parent company purchases the Pioneer News Group media division
The Pioneer News Group Co. announced Oct. 6 it is selling its media division assets to family-owned Adams Publishing Group, parent company of The Star Democrat. The sale will include 22 daily and weekly newspapers in Washington, Oregon, Idaho, Montana and Utah along with a newspaper and commercial print facility, various shoppers and websites. The sale is expected to be finalized Nov. 1, a press release states. Terms were not disclosed.
The Pioneer News Group is a family media business owned by members of the Scripps family. The Scripps family has a long history in newspapers, starting with EW Scripps, who started the Detroit Evening News in 1873 and the Cleveland Penny Press in 1878, which led to a bigger chain of newspapers that included the
St. Louis Chronicle and Cincinnati Post, the release states.
Pioneer Newspapers was formed by James G. Scripps in 1986. The company is owned by Leighton Wood and his children Stedem, Marnie, Heather and Laura and eight next-generation family members. Marnie Roozen is chairwoman of the company’s board of directors.
“It has been an honor for my family to serve our communities over these many generations,” said Roozen in the release. “We cherish the friendships we have created with our employees and truly feel we are a family. It is because of our dedication to our communities and employees that we are so pleased that Adams Publishing Group is purchasing our media division. Adams shares our values as well as a deep commitment to the future of community newspapers. It is heartening to know our papers will be in very capable hands.”
The company was recently renamed Pioneer News Group to reflect its expansion to produce news and advertising, both in print and expanding digital formats. Mike Gugliotto is president and CEO of Pioneer.
“I’m very proud of the outstanding work Pioneer employees have produced as our industry continues to evolve, facing related challenges and exciting new opportunities,” said Gugliotto in the release. “It’s been a privilege to work with some of the most dedicated, determined and creative people in the business, with the unwavering support of the Wood family.”
APG owns and operates 100 community newspapers in 11 states, including the acquisition of five newspaper publishing companies in 2016. The company is based in Minneapolis. In addition to its community newspaper company, the Adams family owns radio stations, outdoor advertising companies, a wine distribution business, label printing companies and a large interest in Camping World Holdings, a publicly traded national network of RV dealers, affinity programs, the Good Sam Club and other RVrelated products and services.
“We’re very excited to welcome the Pioneer group of community newspapers, commercial print facilities, and other print and digital products and services to APG. We’re especially pleased to welcome Pioneer’s over 500 dedicated associates to our community newspaper group,” said Steve Adams of the Adams Publishing Group in the release. “The Wood family, along with Pioneer’s dedicated employees and management team, has done a stellar job of creating new and compelling products and services, both in print and digital, in the face of an ever changing media landscape. We commend their efforts,
and look forward to continuing their proud journalistic tradition in the communities Pioneer serves.”
Pioneer newspapers in the sale
include The Ellensburg Daily Record, The Klamath Falls Herald and News, The Lake County Examiner, The Klamath Falls Nickel, The Skagit Valley Herald, The Anacortes American, The Burlington Argus, The Sedro-Woolley Courier-Times, The Stanwood Camano News, The Logan Herald Journal, The Tremonton Leader, The Bozeman Daily Chronicle, The Belgrade News, The Idaho Press Tribune, The Idaho State Journal, The Kuna Melba News, The Meridian Press, The Emmett Messenger Index, The Montpelier NewsExaminer, The Preston Citizen, The Rexburg Standard Journal and The Teton Valley News.
Cribb, Greene & Cope represented the Pioneer News Group Co. in this transaction.