February 22, 2018

Telegram parent buys Worcester Magazine, five others

The Worcester Magazine is now part of GateHouse Media.

New York-based GateHouse Media, the parent company of the Worcester Telegram & Gazette, is acquiring a small Central Massachusetts media company, which owns Worcester Magazine.

Worcester Magazine and the Telegram reported the news Thursday morning.

Millbury-based Holden Landmark Corp. owns and operates Worcester Magazine, the Landmark in Holden, baystateparent magazine, the Grafton News, the Millbury-Sutton Chronicle and the Leominster Champion. They will now become GateHouse publications.

The sale price was not disclosed.

HLC owner Kirk Davis -- also the CEO of Gatehouse Media -- announced the sale to employees Thursday morning, Worcester Magazine and Telegram & Gazette both reported.

Paul Provost, president of the T&G, attended the employee meeting with Davis at the Beechwood Hotel Thursday morning. Provost will be managing Landmark Corp. operations, according to the paper.

The sale adds to GateHouse's skyrocketing portfolio of news operations in Massachusetts and around the country. The company, which is owned by parent company New Media Investments, owns the T&G, MetroWest Daily News, Providence Journal and Cape Cod Times, among others.

"There's clearly a strategic fit here between my group and our local GateHouse properties in Central Massachusetts that excites me," Davis said Thursday morning, the T&G reported. "I see a tremendous opportunity here."

Davis reportedly said he had been juggling the growing demands of running GateHouse Media while maintaining the smaller publications at HLC.

According to the T&G, Davis bought the Landmark in 2001 from Joane Root, who founded the paper in her basement in the 1970s. The company then bought the Worcester Magazine in 2008.

The magazine was previously owned and operated by Worcester Publishing Ltd., which also owned the WBJ, Hartford Business Journal and Mainebiz. WBJ Publisher and New England Business Media CEO Peter Stanton and Group Publisher Joe Zwiebel formed NEBM after leaving Worcester Publishing in 2007, taking with them the three business publications.

This acquisition comes shortly after GateHouse failed in its bid for the bankrupt Boston Herald, being outbid by Digital First Media's $11.9 million bid after an initial bid of $5 million. Digital First owns and operates the Fitchburg Sentinel & Enterprise, where it recently laid off its editor and is closing its newsroom.

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