March 26, 2018

GateHouse Media to acquire Gardner News

WBJ File Photo
GateHouse Media's holdings in Central Mass. include three daily, five weeklies, one monthly magazine and now the Gardner News.

GateHouse Media, the owners of the Telegram & Gazette, Worcester Magazine and several other publications in Central Mass. and hundreds of newspapers across the country, is acquiring the Gardner News.

The Telegram & Gazette was the first to report the acquisition Monday, citing an announcement from GateHouse Media CEO Kirk Davis.

According to the report, no purchase price was immediately disclosed. Neither GateHouse Media nor its parent company New Media Investment Group have released official announcements as of Monday morning.

The acquisition ends the long history of the Gardner News' independent ownership. The Bell family had owned the paper since 1963. Alberta S. Bell has been president of the company since 1992 after the death of her husband, C. Gordon Bell.

In comments reported by the Telegram & Gazette, Davis said he admires the "winning formula" at The Gardner News.

"We are proud to continue Alberta's fine legacy of providing top-notch journalism to the greater Gardner community," he said.

According to The Gardner News' website, there are currently nine employees in the editorial staff, covering Gardner, Ashburnham, Westminster, Templeton, Hubbardston and Phillipston.

The purchase continues GateHouse near monopoly of news organizations in Central Massachusetts and follows the company's $1.2 million purchase in February of the Worcester Magazine and five other local publications under the Holden Landmark Corp.

New Media Investment Group has spent well over $900 million on newspaper acquisitions since its founding after GateHouse Media emerged out of bankruptcy in 2013.

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