AddThis SmartLayers

Northcliffe sale reports are 'strongly denied'

Daily Mail and General Trust has strongly denied reports that it is trying to offload its regional newspaper arm Northcliffe Media.

A report in yesterday’s Sunday Times claimed DMGT was in talks over a potential sale of the publisher to either Trinity Mirror or Johnston Press.

According to the report, DMGT would then take a stake in the newly-enlarged group, which would automatically become the dominant player in the UK regional newspaper industry.

DMGT finance director Peter Williams has today issued a strong denial of the Rupert Murdoch-owned newspaper’s claims.

He said the piece contained a series of “major inaccuracies” about the aborted sale of Northcliffe some years ago, and about how the company’s pension funds would be affected by any transaction.

Northcliffe was put up for sale by DMGT in 2005 but later taken off the market after the bids failed to match the company’s valuation of the business.

The Sunday Times’ report, which was published behind a paywall, is the latest in a series of speculative national newspaper stories about possible consolidation of the regional press industry.

Last year the Sunday Telegraph claimed that the big four regional publishers were discussing a series of asset-swaps designed to bring more geographical coherence to their regional portfolios.


Creosote Arthur (12/07/2010 12:16:20)
My God!
A story mentioning JP that hasn’t yet been swooped on by the usual shrivelled-up morons.
Who’ll be first?

Arnold Bennett, Paris (12/07/2010 13:08:39)
Is that intro accurate? I can’t find any quotes, either in this story or elsewhere on the web, to support the idea that DMGT is denying it wants to offload Northcliffe. Peter Williams’ quotes (in his press release) say the ‘major inaccuracies’ are in realtion to the previously aborted sale and the pension analysis. But NOT the fact that he wants to ditch the local papers. Also interesting that Northcliffe staff are still waiting to be told if the story is true…

El Nuncio (14/07/2010 10:46:14)
More Northclifee cutsRichard Titus departs as CEO of digital arm
A&N Media group managing director Kevin Beatty has announced changes to the structure of the group’s digital arm, AND.
He said: “In light of the current economic conditions, A&N Media has decided to streamline the organisational structure around its digital activities. The CEOs of The Digital Property Group, Jobsite Group, Travel Group (including teletext holidays) and Motors Group will all now report to me with immediate effect.
“As part of this change, Richard D. Titus, previously CEO of AND, will be departing the organisation, though he will remain engaged with both A&N Media and DMGT as a consultant and advisor on various strategic, digital and consumer issues.”
then there’s the unbiased version :