The sale was completed March 4, 2013, of the McLean Publishing interests in three newspapers and their related publications and digital websites serving the DuBois, Brookville and New Bethlehem areas to Tioga Publishing Company, a division of Community Media Group, West Frankfort, Ill., according to Cribb, Greene & Associates who represented Independent Publications in the transaction. The newspapers include The Courier-Express, DuBois; the Value Guide shopper; the weekly Tri-County Sunday; the Jeffersonian Democrat at Brookville; and The Leader-Vindicator at New Bethlehem.
The newspapers had been owned and operated by Independent Publications located at Bryn Mawr, Pa., a company controlled by the McLean family, longtime Pennsylvania publishers of newspapers, monthly and quarterly magazines and other publications, dating back to 1895. McLean Publishing operated the Courier-Express since 1988. The Jeffersonian Democrat was purchased in 1990. The company founded the Tri-County Sunday publication in 1993 and acquired the New Bethlehem Leader-Vindicator in 1998. The McLean family made the decision to exit the publishing business last year and are in the process of liquidating various related assets.
Community Media Group operates daily and weekly newspapers, shoppers, magazines and digital websites located in several states, including Pennsylvania, New York, Indiana, Illinois, Michigan and Iowa. The company’s related publishing operations in Pennsylvania include newspapers and shoppers at Bradford, Port Allegany, Coudersport, Westfield, Wellsboro and Mansfield. The company also publishes quarterly Community Health Magazines in Pittsburgh and the surrounding region.
Andrew T. Bickford, president and chief executive officer of Independent Publications, said, “after many years of serving the readers and advertisers in the DuBois area, we are pleased to pass the torch to a media company that has an established presence in and commitment to the region.”
Larry J. Perrotto, chairman and chief executive officer of Community Media Group, said, “we are most pleased to have this opportunity to serve the west central Pennsylvania region and the communities of DuBois, Brookville and New Bethlehem. We pledge to be strong advocates for the interests of the region and we are committed to continue the great tradition of high quality journalism so ably established by the McLean family and Independent Publication’s President, Andrew Bickford.”
Perrotto also announced, that longtime Pennsylvania newspaper executive, Joseph C. Piccirillo, of Ridgway has accepted the appointment of Group Executive for the three newspapers.
Cribb, Greene & Associates is a ninety year old newspaper brokerage, appraisal and consulting firm with offices in Bozeman, Montana and Charlottesville, Virginia.