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News agency continues expansion with takeover

A fast-growing independent news agency has continued its expansion by acquiring another regionally-based agency.

The Bristol-based SWNS, formerly South West News Service, has taken over Ross Parry Agency in Leeds, adding it to other companies it owns across the country.

Dave Parry, who founded the Leeds agency, will remain with the business which will retain the Ross Parry name.

SWNS also incorporates News Team International in Birmingham, Masons News in Cambridge and HE Media in Scotland, along with PR company 72Point, market research firm OnePoll.com, and TV production unit Oblong Films.

Andy Young, director and group editor of SWNS, said: “It is a major coup for us to bring an agency with the calibre and reputation of Ross Parry into the SWNS Group and strengthens our geographical foothold in line with our expansion plans.

“SWNS is committed to growth and will continue to provide a comprehensive, quality news, picture and features service covering the length and breadth of the UK.

“We now cover most major breaking news and human interest stories from Land’s End to John O’Groats. This, combined with a growing video content operation, enables us to provide quality, multi-media content to our print and digital clients.”

SWNS has undergone a major expansion since opening its first satellite office in Plymouth in 2005.

It now employs around 70 editorial staff and syndicates content for a number of major publishing groups, including Local World, Johnston Press and the Kent Messenger Group.

Dave Parry said: “Everyone at Ross Parry is looking forward to the future. We have always been at the forefront of gathering news stories in the North of England. Our union with SWNS will make our core business of providing stories and pictures to national and international markets even stronger.

“Coming under the SWNS umbrella has already produced dividends. A story that broke in the Midlands with NewsTeam was completed in Yorkshire by Ross Parry, giving a complete package to all our media outlets.

“Sharing technology with all our SWNS partners will take Ross Parry to a new level, providing an even better service from our region.”

SWNS has also won a licence to run a local TV station for Bristol, called Made in Bristol, which will be launched next February.

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  • July 3, 2013 at 3:29 pm
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    Am I the only one who thinks that this massive SWNS expansion is going to end in tears?

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  • July 5, 2013 at 5:11 pm
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    “We now cover most major breaking news and human interest stories from Land’s End to John O’Groats.” Really? Perhaps this should read: “We now read the regionals from Land’s End to John O’Groat and ring them for contact numbers. If they refuse to dish out numbers, we’ll give the stories a quick re-write and ping off to the nationals.” Good work.

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