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Managing director of newspaper group resigns

Managing director of the Kent Messenger Group, Graham Mead, has resigned.

The announcement comes less than two weeks after it was announced that the KM group is proposing to buy the Kent Regional News and Media weeklies from Northcliffe Media.

Graham, who joined the family-owned firm in January 2009 and was previously Managing Director of Trinity Mirror Southern, is planning to take some time out before deciding on his next career move.

In a message to staff Graham, 50, said he had ‘a huge attachment to and belief in the KM Group’ adding ‘It has been a very difficult decision.’

Graham will leave the company at the end of September and will be replaced by finance director Richard Elliot, who joined the group in September 2008.

A spokesman for KM Group said:  “We are sorry to see Graham go. During his time with the KM Group he has steered us through some very difficult years and gained the respect of everyone in the company. We wish him the very best for the future.”

The spokesman added that Graham’s departure will have no impact on the KRNM proposals, and that he will be working closely with Richard to ensure a smooth handover.

Graham joined the regional press in 1993 holding a number of roles within Trinity Mirror, latterly as MD of the nine business units of Trinity Mirror Southern. Before he joined the KM group Graham worked as a consultant for the KM Group, Tindle Newspapers and Johnston Press.

KM Group currently has seven paid-for newspapers, including the Kent Messenger, nine free newspapers; 11 websites and eight radio stations across Kent.

If the proposal goes ahead they will also acquire the Medway News, East Kent Gazette, Herne Bay and Whitstable Times, Isle of Thanet Gazette, Thanet Times, Folkestone Herald and Dover Express

The group’s bid to acquire the seven newspapers is now subject to a 40 day investigative process by the Office of Fair Trading.