June 4, 2009, LAPEER, MI - Lapeer-based JAMS Media, owners of VIEW Newspapers, has entered into an asset purchase agreement to acquire The County Press and a dozen other publications in the Lapeer Group from Journal Register Company. Approval of the pending purchase was granted May 29 by Judge Allan L. Gropper in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in the Southern District of New York.
Dirks, Van Essen & Murray, a newspaper merger-and-acquisition firm in Santa Fe, New Mexico, represented Journal Register Company in the transaction.
The purchase of the Lapeer Group brings the 170-year-old County Press back into local ownership for the first time in almost 20 years.
“We’re glad to have one of the oldest newspapers in the country back in local hands right here in Lapeer,” said Rick Burrough, a lifelong resident of Lapeer and president of JAMS Media.
“This is an exciting day for all of us. At VIEW Newspapers we are committed to intense local coverage of all our communities. We provide excellent results to our advertisers, and with the expanded footprint these additions bring we can carry the advertising message across eight counties. We will continue the commitment we have established in all of our publications to be your community connection.”
JAMS Media owns VIEW Newspapers, which includes the Lapeer Area View, Grand Blanc View, Burton View and the Davison Index. This acquisition increases JAMS Media’s holdings to 17 publications that serve a combined circulation of nearly 250,000 homes in eight counties reaching from southeast Michigan to mid-Michigan and the “thumb”.
In addition to The County Press, the purchase includes the County Press Extra, County Press Marquee, County Line Reminder, Tri-County Citizen (Chesaning), Sanilac County News, Sanilac Extra, Sanilac Buyers Guide, Thumb Blanket, Huron County Press, Jeffersonian (Croswell), Brown City Banner and Homeseekers.
Terms of the agreement were not disclosed.
JAMS Media will be managed by group publisher Peter Neill, a 43-year veteran of the newspaper business in the U.S. and Ireland. Neill was an executive with the Chicago Sun-Times Co. for 22 years and more recently was vice president and general manager of the Observer & Eccentric Newspapers in Livonia, Michigan, a community newspaper group managed by the Detroit Media Partnership.
The newly acquired papers will be headquartered in Lapeer and printed in Davisburg, Michigan at Michigan Web Press, which is owned by Burrough.
The Journal Register Company filed for reorganization under federal Chapter 11 bankruptcy on Feb. 19, 2009.
If you have further questions contact Jamie Oldershaw at Dirks, Van Essen & Murray at 505-820-2700.