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Gannett not reporting news of Gannett takeover

Gannett owns 8 New Jersey daily newspapers; Star-Ledger, also passes on reporting $1.36M takeover bid

By David Wildstein, January 14 2019 10:29 am

There seems to be a sort of media blackout in New Jersey, where none of the eight Gannett-owned daily newspapers have reported on a $1.36 billion takeover bid of their company.

NJ Advance Media, which owns the Star-Ledger and several other New Jersey dailies, has also skipped reporting the proposed sale.

Gannett issued a statement early this morning acknowledging that they have received an unsolicited cash offer to sell their company to MNG Enterprises – also known as Digital Media First – but their newspapers have not reported it.

The story was first reported by the Wall Street Journal on Sunday.  Most major news outlets, including the New York Times, the Associated Press, CNN and Fox Business Network, have reported the story.

USA Today, a Gannett publication, reported on the purchase offer last night.  That story does not yet appear on any of Gannett’s New Jersey-based news sites.

Dan Sforza, the news director at The (Bergen) Record, did not immediately respond to a 10:00 AM direct message seeking comment.

The Trentonian, which is owned by Digital First Media, has the Associated Press story on the proposed sale posted on their website.

Digital Media First has a reputation for dramatic budget cuts, especially on the editorial side, and the prospects of a takeover of Gannett was made with immediate opposition from journalists posting on Twitter last night.

“Bad, bad, bad news,” Ryan Hutchins, the New Jersey bureau chief for POLITICO tweeted last night.”

In addition to The Record, Gannett operates the Asbury Park Press, the Courier News, the Courier-Post, the Home News Tribune, the Daily Record, the Daily Journal, and the Herald News in New Jersey, as well as several weekly newspapers.

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