BRIES

Alabama-based group buys Civitas Media Kentucky group

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Appalachian Newspapers Inc., a unit of Alabama-based Lancaster Management Inc., has acquired a group of newspapers in eastern Kentucky from Civitas Media.

Included in the acquisition were the Prestonsburg Floyd County Times, East Kentucky Shopper, Hazard Herald, Shopper Stopper and related digital platforms.
Dirks, Van Essen & Murray, a media merger and acquisition firm based in Santa Fe, New Mexico, represented Civitas Media in the transaction. Terms were not disclosed.

Appalachian Newspapers is publisher of the Appalachian News-Express, Floyd County Chronicle, Mingo Messenger and Mountain Bargain Hunter in eastern Kentucky. Lancaster Management Inc. owns and manages 20 different newspaper companies that produce 29 newspapers, 16 shoppers and more than 150 niche publications.

The twice-weekly Floyd County Times of Prestonburg is being merged with Lancaster's Floyd County Chronicle. The newly formed Floyd County Chronicle and Times will also be published twice a week. The East Kentucky Shopper is a weekly, as are the Hazard Herald and the Shopper Stopper.

Lancaster has owned Appalachian Newspapers Inc. since 1978. Jeff Vanderbeck, who currently publishes Lancaster's newspapers in the region, has been named publisher of the Hazard Herald and the newly formed Floyd County Chronicle and Times.

"Our commitment is and always will be to provide the most credible and complete local news, sports and information available," Vanderbeck said. "Our newspapers' reputations have been built on telling the whole story fairly and completely and giving people the information they need and deserve. That will not change."