A regional publisher is “sounding out suitors” for a potential sale, a national newspaper has claimed.
Both Archant and Stephens Europe declined to respond to the claims when approached by HTFP, with the latter saying it “doesn’t comment on anything in the press or otherwise”.
In its story, the Times claimed the regional newspaper industry “appears poised for a fresh wave of consolidation” and also touched on previous speculation about the future of JPIMedia.
The story adds: “Archant, the owner of titles such as anti-Brexit title the New European and the Eastern Daily Press, is also working with advisers Stephens Europe to sound out suitors.”
Earlier this month Sky News claimed JPIMedia was sounding out advisers about launching an auction of parts or all of the business.
Chief executive David King responded at the time by saying “nothing has been decided”, but the Times has now claimed the company has started “hunting for buyers”.
The story states: “A group of bondholders led by Golden Tree Asset Management has appointed bankers at Stella EOC to lay the groundwork for a potential sale of part, or all, of the business formerly known as Johnston Press.
“The move comes despite the fact that JPIMedia boss David King wrote an email to staff earlier this month stating that the company had not opened a ‘formal sales process’ for any of its titles, but was working with advisers on ‘business plans for the group.'”
JPIMedia declined to comment on the claims when approached by HTFP.