Briefs

Paddock Publications, the suburban Chicago publisher, branches out to the south with purchase of five downstate Illinois dailies from GateHouse Media

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Paddock Publications Inc., the family owned publisher of the Daily Herald in the Chicago suburbs, is buying five dailies and seven weeklies located in southern Illinois from GateHouse Media. 

Included in the sale are these dailies: Benton Evening News, The Daily Register in Harrisburg, The Daily Republican in Marion, Du Quoin Evening Call and Eldorado Daily Journal.

The weeklies are the Ashley News, Du Quoin News, The Gallatin Democrat in Shawneetown, Christopher Progress, The Randolph County Herald Tribune in Chester, The Ridgway News and Steeleville Ledger.

Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

“The purchase is in keeping with our corporate strategy to diversify the company into areas where Paddock’s brand of journalism and marketing acumen will provide additive revenues and profitability,” Douglas K. Ray, chairman, publisher and CEO of Paddock Publications, said in a statement. “These newspapers fit that model, and we are confident in our ability to grow the business.

Ray said Paddock, which has published in the Chicago suburbs since 1872, intends to take its “newspapering success in the suburbs to downstate Illinois.” He suggested Paddock may be in the hunt to buy more community newspapers. 

“Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway, one of the country’s most successful corporations, is employing a similar strategy by buying small and medium-sized daily and weekly newspapers,” Ray said. “He has said and we believe: There is no substitute for local news, and a newspaper that serves the community will remain indispensable. We intend to bring that kind of commitment to Southern Illinois.”