Friday, September 01, 2017

Civitas sells last two Kentucky newspapers to Boone-Carpenter, which now has 75 papers

Civitas Media of Davidson, N.C., continues to shed newspapers, completing its exit from Kentucky by selling the dailies in Harlan and Middlesboro, in the state's southeast corner. The buyers are new limited-liability companies owned by Carpenter Newsmedia of Natchez, Miss., and managed by Boone Newspapers of Tuscaloosa, Ala.

Bill Sharp will remain publisher of the two papers, and of The Claiborne Progress, a weekly in Tazewell, Tenn., near Middlesboro, that was also part of the sale. “I am very excited about this transition and I look forward to a great future with people who care about community news and the local newspaper,” said Sharp, whose newspaper career began as an Progress advertising salesman. The Harlan paper, in a county suffering from the decline of the Central Appalachian coal industry, recently reduced its publication frequency to four days a week.

The buyers entered Kentucky two years ago with their purchase of The State Journal in the state capital of Frankfort and the four Central Kentucky papers that were owned by Schurz Communications of Misawaka, Ind. "BNI owns and manages 75 newspapers in similar-sized communities that, in addition to those in which CNL has ownership interest, are in Minnesota, Michigan and Ohio," they said.

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