Press Releases

Schurz Communications Inc. to Acquire Petoskey (MI) News-Review and Companion Publications

PETOSKEY, MI, JANUARY 18, 2006 - Schurz Communications Inc., of South Bend, Indiana, has agreed to purchase Northern Michigan Review Inc., publisher of the daily Petoskey (MI) News-Review and other publications. Elsa C. Schaller, president of Northern Michigan Review, made the announcement today.

Dirks, Van Essen & Murray, a newspaper merger-and-acquisition firm based in Santa Fe, New Mexico, represented the Schaller family in the transaction.

In addition to the News-Review, the company publishes the Gaylord (MI) Herald Times, Charlevoix (MI) Courier, companion publications and two PhoneGuide telephone directories distributed in northern Michigan. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

The Schaller family has been involved in the newspaper business in northern Michigan since the 1930s, beginning with William F. Schaller, who later merged Northern Michigan Review and The Petoskey Evening News under the name Petoskey News-Review. In the mid-1980s the family began the PhoneGuide telephone directories. Elsa Schaller is the widow of Kirk Schaller who died in 2001. Kirk had four children, Gretchen Schaller-Arnold, John Schaller, Patrick Schaller, and David Schaller. Patrick and Gretchen, along with their mother, Elsa, will continue to be involved with the business.

The Petoskey News-Review is published Monday through Friday afternoon. The newspaper recently introduced a Saturday edition and has circulation of 11,000. The Gaylord Herald Times is published twice a week and has 6,500 circulation. The Charlevoix Courier has paid circulation of 2,500 and is published weekly. Total distribution of the companion weekly publications is 60,000. The two PhoneGuide telephone directories reach 200,000 households and businesses in the northern portion of the lower peninsula of Michigan.

Based in South Bend, Indiana, Schurz Communications, Inc. is a diversified privately-owned, nationwide communication company. The company publishes 10 daily newspapers with a combined circulation of nearly 225,000. It also publishes three weekly newspapers, shopping guide publications, and owns a printing company. It owns five television stations, six radio stations, and two cable companies. Geographically, Schurz Communications has a presence in Indiana, Kentucky, Maryland, Pennsylvania, California, Florida, Missouri, Georgia and Virginia.

Elsa Schaller said, “We are pleased to be joining the Schurz organization. Schurz Communications shares our values and recognizes the vital role our newspapers, PhoneGuides and other publications play in our communities. We are excited about the markets we serve and believe that this transaction will provide a strong foundation for continuing to faithfully serve our communities.”

Todd Schurz, president of Schurz Communications said, “Our family company looks for excellent organizations with strong staffs in attractive communities. We have admired the Schaller family and their company for many years, and we are excited about the future of Northern Michigan Review Inc. and northwestern Michigan.”

Charles Pittman, Senior Vice President of Newspaper Operations for Schurz Communications, added, “We are extremely happy about the opportunity to make this acquisition, and we look forward to carrying on the fine tradition of community newspapering that the Schaller family has provided.”