Paxton buys Landmark Community Newspapers

By Paxton Media Group

Paxton Media Group, which owns The Herald, announced Wednesday the purchase of Landmark Community Newspapers LLC, a chain of daily and weekly newspapers based in Shelbyville, Kentucky.

The deal, which was finalized this week, includes the purchase of all 46 newspapers in the Landmark chain.

“We are very excited to add these newspapers into the PMG portfolio," said Jamie Paxton, PMG president and CEO. "PMG believes strongly in the value of local newspapers and the vital role they play in the communities that they serve. We appreciate Landmark choosing us to be the new stewards of these important community assets.”

The Landmark purchase includes 20 Kentucky publications, including papers in Elizabethtown, Shelbyville, Shepherdsville, Lebanon and Bardstown, among others. PMG, which is headquartered in Paducah, will now own 37 newspapers throughout Kentucky and a total of 119 publications across 14 states.

It continues an ongoing effort at PMG to acquire community newspapers in the company's existing geographic footprint, said Mike Weafer, publisher of the Messenger-Inquirer and group publisher for the Kentucky-Indiana region.

“Paxton has been interested in acquiring newspapers as part of our strategy given the conditions and the nature of the newspaper industry,” Weafer said Tuesday. “Acquisitions strengthen us and help us to preserve, so it is part of an overall strategy to continue to acquire newspapers.

“Landmark has a clustering of newspapers that are very geographically connected to Paxton papers,” he said. “So there is a lot of synergy that can be had with that.”

Landmark Community Newspapers traces its roots to 1966 when a group of eight local newspaper publishers decided to pool their resources and purchase a printing plant. The company was incorporated as Newspapers Inc. two years later in 1968. Newspapers Inc. was then purchased by Landmark Communications Inc. in 1973.
In addition to its Kentucky newspapers, the sale includes Landmark's publications in Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Florida, Tennessee, Indiana and Iowa.

PMG will officially take over operations in early June, but there will be a transition period to PMG regarding systems and procedures, Paxton said.

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