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RCO





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PostPosted: Mon Nov 27, 2017 11:08 am    Post subject: Postmedia to close more community newspapers Reply with quote

( in a somewhat confusing transaction postmedia has sold some of its newspapers to Metroland and acquired some of there's but plans to close many community newspapers across Ontario especially in Ottawa and eastern Ontario )



Postmedia Announces Community Newspapers Transaction with Torstar

November 27, 2017 (TORONTO) – Postmedia Network Canada Corp. owner of Postmedia Network Inc. (“Postmedia” or the “Company”) today announced a transaction with Metroland Media Group and Free Daily News Group Inc., both subsidiaries of Torstar Corporation, (collectively, “Torstar”) to acquire 22 of Torstar’s community newspaper properties and 2 free commuter daily newspapers and to sell 15 of Postmedia’s community newspaper properties and 2 free commuter daily newspapers to Torstar. This is effectively a non-cash transaction as the properties have approximately similar fair values.

“This transaction allows Postmedia to focus on strategic areas and core products, and allows us to continue with a suite of community-based products, in a deeply disrupted industry,” said Paul Godfrey, Executive Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Postmedia.

Postmedia intends to continue operating the Exeter Times-Advocate and the Exeter Weekender and will close the remainder of the acquired properties – which are located in areas serviced by multiple publications – by mid-January. These actions will deliver cost synergies while maintaining those operations that are sustainable and support Postmedia’s strategy. In addition, the transaction allows Postmedia to serve additional flyer and insert customers in certain markets using its existing distribution system.

“What makes this particularly difficult is that it means we will say goodbye to many dedicated newspaper people. However, the continuing costs of producing dozens of small community newspapers in these regions in the face of significantly declining advertising revenues means that most of these operations no longer have viable business models,” said Mr. Godfrey.

“The growing strength of digital giants has caused seismic shifts in the allocation of advertising revenues – putting all media companies under massive pressure,” said Andrew MacLeod, President and Chief Operating Officer, Postmedia. “Our digital strategies are showing promising signs but we must take all possible actions in order to give these new initiatives time to grow momentum while managing the decline of legacy revenue streams and their associated costs.”

Postmedia has independently determined its plans for the acquired publications. The transaction is not subject to the merger notification provisions of the Competition Act and no regulatory clearance is required to close the transaction.

Transaction at a Glance



Properties Acquired by Postmedia from Torstar

Belleville News

Brant News

Central Hastings News

Exeter Times-Advocate
(and the Exeter Weekender)

Frontenac Gazette

Kanata Kourier-Standard

Kingston Heritage

Meaford Express

Metro Ottawa

Metro Winnipeg

Nepean/Barrhaven News

Norfolk News

Orleans News

Ottawa East News

Ottawa South News

Ottawa West News

Our London

Quinte West News

St. Lawrence News

St. Mary’s Journal-Argus
(and the St. Mary’s Weekender)

St. Thomas/Elgin Weekly News

Stittsville News

Stratford City Gazette

West Carleton Review



Properties Sold by Postmedia to Torstar

24 Hours Toronto

24 Hours Vancouver

Barrie Examiner

Bradford Times

Collingwood Enterprise Bulletin

Fort Erie Times

Innisfil Examiner

Inport News (Port Colborne)

Niagara Advance

Niagara Falls Review

Northumberland Today

Orillia Packet & Times

Pelham News

Peterborough Examiner

St. Catharines Standard

Thorold Niagara News

Welland Tribune



About Postmedia Network Canada Corp.

Postmedia Network Canada Corp. (TSX:PNC.A, PNC.B) is the holding company that owns Postmedia Network Inc., a Canadian newsmedia company representing more than 160 brands across multiple print, online, and mobile platforms. Award-winning journalists and innovative product development teams bring engaging content to millions of people every week whenever and wherever they want it. This exceptional content, reach and scope offers advertisers and marketers compelling solutions to effectively reach target audiences. For more information, visit www.postmedia.com.

Forward-Looking Information

This news release may include information that is “forward-looking information” under applicable Canadian securities laws. The Company has tried, where possible, to identify such information and statements by using words such as “believe,” “expect,” “intend,” “estimate,” “anticipate,” “may,” “will,” “could,” “would,” “should” and similar expressions and derivations thereof in connection with any discussion of future events, trends or prospects or future operating or financial performance. Forward-looking statements in this news release include statements with respect to the continuation of community-based products, realization of anticipated cost synergies and efficiencies, serving additional flyer and insert customers, the keeping open or shutting down of certain publications within a specified timeframe, the momentum of digital strategies and the managing of legacy revenue decline and associated costs. By their nature, forward-looking information and statements involve risks and uncertainties because they relate to events and depend on circumstances that may or may not occur in the future. These risks and uncertainties include, among others: competition from digital and other forms of media; the effect of economic conditions on advertising revenue; the ability of the Company to build out its digital media and online businesses; the failure to maintain current print and online newspaper readership and circulation levels; the realization of anticipated cost savings; possible damage to the reputation of the Company’s brands or trademarks; possible labour disruptions; possible environmental liabilities, litigation and pension plan obligations; fluctuations in foreign exchange rates and the prices of newsprint and other commodities. For a complete list of our risk factors please refer to the section entitled “Risk Factors” contained in our annual management’s discussion and analysis for the years ended August 31, 2017 and 2016. Although the Company bases such information and statements on assumptions believed to be reasonable when made, they are not guarantees of future performance and actual results of operations, financial condition and liquidity, and developments in the industry in which the Company operates, may differ materially from any such information and statements in this press release. Given these risks and uncertainties, undue reliance should not be placed on any forward-looking information or forward-looking statements, which speak only as of the date of such information or statements. Other than as required by law, the Company does not undertake, and specifically declines, any obligation to update such information or statements or to publicly announce the results of any revisions to any such information or statements.

For more information:

Media Contact
Phyllise Gelfand
Vice President, Communications
(416) 442-2936
pgelfand@postmedia.com



Investor Contact
Brian Bidulka
Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer
(416) 383-2499
bbidulka@postmedia.com


http://www.postmedia.com/2017/.....h-torstar/
RCO





Joined: 02 Mar 2009
Posts: 6725
Reputation: 239.8
votes: 3
Location: Ontario

PostPosted: Mon Nov 27, 2017 3:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

( its increasingly clear anything postmedia touches turns to dust , I remember we had a neat little local paper here that seemed to be doing well and popular a few years ago , but as soon as postmedia became the owner it was over and cancelled )


Postmedia to shutter community papers in Ottawa



Newstalk 580 CFRA
Published Monday, November 27, 2017 2:10PM EST
Last Updated Monday, November 27, 2017 2:35PM EST


A new deal between Postmedia Network Inc and Torstar Corp . will see some papers swapped and several shut down.

The deal will see Torstar acquire 15 community newspapers and two free commuter daily newspapers.

Postmedia will get 22 weekly community newspapers along with the free daily publications Metro Ottawa and Metro Winnipeg.



Of the community papers, Postmedia says they plan on closing all but two by mid-January.

Locally this includes:
• Metro Ottawa
• Orleans News
• Ottawa East News
• Ottawa South News
• Ottawa West News
• Kanata Kourier-Standard
• Nepean/Barrhaven News
• West Carleton Review
• Stittsville News

The deal will see at least 244 people lose their jobs at papers across the board.

In a statement released on Monday morning, Postmedia CEO Paul Godfrey called the business a 'deeply disrupted industry.' But he touched on the loss of jobs as well.

"What makes this particularly difficult is that it means we will say goodbye to many dedicated newspaper people. However, the continuing costs of producing dozens of small community newspapers in these regions in the face of significantly declining advertising revenues means that most of these operations no longer have viable business models," said Mr. Godfrey.

There was plenty of local reaction to the news on Twitter Monday afternoon from local leaders.

http://ottawa.ctvnews.ca/postm.....-1.3696162
RCO





Joined: 02 Mar 2009
Posts: 6725
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votes: 3
Location: Ontario

PostPosted: Mon Nov 27, 2017 3:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Torstar, Postmedia newspaper closures aim to reduce competition, say analysts

newspapers
The companies say the transaction is effectively a non-cash deal, as the consideration for the publications being purchased is roughly equal to that of the publications being sold.

Dan Healing, The Canadian Press
Published Monday, November 27, 2017 11:17AM EST
Last Updated Monday, November 27, 2017 2:29PM EST


A deal between Torstar Corp. and Postmedia Network Inc. to sell newspapers to each other and close them down is designed to reduce competition and win a bigger slice of a shrinking advertising and readership pie, critics said Monday.

Postmedia (TSX:PNC.A, TSX:PNC.B) announced it will cut 244 jobs as it plans to shutter 21 of the 22 community newspaper properties it is acquiring from Torstar as well as the Metro Winnipeg and Metro Ottawa free dailies.

Torstar's Metroland Media Group Ltd., meanwhile, said it will close three of the seven daily newspapers in Ontario it's buying from Postmedia as well as all eight community newspapers it's purchased, resulting in the loss of 46 jobs.


Torstar (TSX:TS.B) said one job will disappear as it buys and closes the free dailies 24Hours Toronto and 24Hours Vancouver.

"The scale of it, I think, is stunning and will be stunning for people who live in these communities who are going to lose access to, really, their local news," said April Lindgren, an associate professor at the Ryerson School of Journalism.

More than 200 local news sources -- newspapers, online publications and others -- have closed for various reasons in Canada since 2008, she said, citing data she's helped compile for the Local News Research Project.

"What they're doing is shutting down newspapers in their immediate environs so the circulation can be taken over and the news coverage can be expanded by their existing papers in the area," she said.

She said Postmedia, for instance, is shutting down Torstar newspapers in the coverage area of its Ottawa Citizen and Torstar is buying and closing Postmedia products in southern Ontario that might compete with its Toronto Star.

The loss of local news titles will likely get worse, not better, as advertising dollars continue to migrate to the internet, said Mitch Diamantopoulos, an associate journalism professor in the University of Regina.

"An attempt to cut costs by eliminating competition is bad news for Canadians," he said.

He said the closing of free daily newspapers isn't surprising because some of them were created to block competitors, not make money. The closings suggest their publishers no longer think that's a necessary or affordable strategy, he said.

Media union CWA Canada called on the federal government on Monday to strengthen the Competition Act to prevent such deals, which it charged are designed to eliminate competition.

Postmedia said in a release the transaction requires no regulatory approvals and is not subject to the merger notification provisions of the Competition Act.

"What makes this particularly difficult is that it means we will say goodbye to many dedicated newspaper people," said Postmedia executive chairman and CEO Paul Godfrey in the statement.

"However, the continuing costs of producing dozens of small community newspapers in these regions in the face of significantly declining advertising revenues means that most of these operations no longer have viable business models."

Metroland said the daily publications it will close are the Barrie Examiner, Orillia Packet & Times and Northumberland Today, while it expects to continue to publish the St. Catharines Standard, Niagara Falls Review, Welland Tribune and Peterborough Examiner.

"This transaction will allow us to operate more efficiently through increased geographic synergies in a number of our primary regions," Torstar CEO John Boynton said in a statement.

"By acquiring publications within or adjacent to our primary areas and selling publications outside our primary areas we will be able to put a greater focus on regions where we believe we can be more effective in serving both customers and clients."

The companies said the transaction is effectively a non-cash deal, as the consideration for the publications being purchased is roughly equal to that of the publications being sold.

Torstar holds an investment in The Canadian Press as part of a joint agreement with a subsidiary of the Globe and Mail and the parent company of Montreal's La Presse.


http://www.ctvnews.ca/business.....-1.3695816
RCO





Joined: 02 Mar 2009
Posts: 6725
Reputation: 239.8
votes: 3
Location: Ontario

PostPosted: Mon Nov 27, 2017 3:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Barrie Examiner, Orillia Packet & Times to close after newspaper swap

Barrie Examiner
Donna Douglas, a former columnist for the Barrie Examiner, holds the last copy of the now shuttered newspaper on Monday, Nov. 27, 2017. (Mike Arsalides/ CTV Barrie)


Adam Ward, CTV Barrie
Published Monday, November 27, 2017 11:34AM EST
Last Updated Monday, November 27, 2017 3:04PM EST



A Barrie institution is among the causalities of a massive shift in Canada’s newspaper industry.


The Barrie Examiner
The Barrie Examiner can be seen in Barrie, Ont. on Monday, Nov. 27, 2017. (Mike Arsalides/ CTV Barrie)

Postmedia Network Inc. and Torstar Corp. announced Monday that it was closing several newspapers, as part of a large deal.

Metroland Media Group Ltd., a subsidiary of Torstar, acquired 15 community papers and two free commuter papers from Postmedia. The company then announced the closure of daily newspapers The Barrie Examiner, Orillia Packet & Times and Northumberland Today.

The Bradford Times, Collingwood Enterprise Bulletin, and the Innisfil Examiner, Fort Erie Times, Niagara Advance, Pelham News, Inport News and the Thorold Niagara News are also closing.

The closures will affect 46 full-time and part-time employees.

“We were hoping for the best, but when we got here there was a sign on the door saying we were closed,” says long-time Barrie Examiner reporter Cheryl Browne. “The government didn’t bail us out. Bombardier who got funding and the car industry, but community newspapers, the guts, the heart of every community, this is exactly what happened. We’ve all lost our jobs here.”

At the same time, Postmedia acquired 22 community newspapers from Torstar. It will cut 244 jobs as it closes 21 community newspapers. The only paper to stay open will be the Exeter Times-Advocate.

“It means no job, I lose my truck and no Christmas for my kids,” says Jay Rice, a subcontractor for the Barrie Examiner. He found out he lost his job when he showed up at work.

Both Metroland Media and Postmedia say the closures are a result of difficult times in the newspaper industry.

“Metroland Media concluded the only realistic option was to close the affected papers due to their falling advertising revenues and Metroland’s projections of their future performance,” the company said in a news release.

Postmedia executive chairman and CEO Paul Godfrey called the situation “particularly difficult.”

"However, the continuing costs of producing dozens of small community newspapers in these regions in the face of significantly declining advertising revenues means that most of these operations no longer have viable business models."

The companies said the transaction is effectively a non-cash deal, as the consideration for the publications being purchased is roughly equal to that of the publications being sold.

http://barrie.ctvnews.ca/barri.....-1.3695851
RCO





Joined: 02 Mar 2009
Posts: 6725
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votes: 3
Location: Ontario

PostPosted: Mon Nov 27, 2017 3:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Union urges feds to help news media after Postmedia, Torstar shutter local papers

By Beatrice Britneff. Published on Nov 27, 2017 10:27am



Canada’s oldest media union is renewing calls on the federal government to intervene and help Canada’s struggling news media outlets, after Postmedia Network Inc. and Torstar Corp. announced Monday morning they will collectively shutter more than 30 community and daily newspapers and eliminate 290 jobs.

In response to the closures – which came about through a publication swap between the two companies – CWA Canada is urging the Liberal government to inject more money into local news coverage; to “beef up” the federal Competition Act “to prevent concentration of ownership” in the news industry; and to allow non-profit news organizations to qualify as charities so they can be supported by philanthropic funding.

In a statement, the union – which represents approximately 6,000 media workers cross Canada – called the Postmedia-Torstar deal a “deathblow to local newspaper coverage.”

“It’s a dark day for local journalism and for local democracy,” Martin O’Hanlon, president of CWA Canada, wrote in a statement. “This means fewer journalists reporting on the stories that matter to communities – and leaves almost no one to hold local politicians and powerful interests to account in many places.”

Last year, Canadian Heritage Minister Mélanie Joly conducted consultations on how to revamp Canada’s cultural policies and strategies. During that time, many groups suggested a variety of lifelines the government could throw to ailing media outlets – particularly newspapers, which are struggling with steep declines in print circulation and advertising revenues.

In a major speech in September outlining Canada’s revamped cultural strategies, Canadian Heritage Minister Mélanie Joly said the government does not intend to to provide that level of assistance the news industry. Joly said the government will not “bail out industry models that are no longer viable” but would instead support “innovation, experimentation and transition to digital.”

The minister said Monday afternoon she is “sorry” to hear about the Postmedia and Torstar closures and that the government “values the importance of journalism.” When asked whether the Postmedia-Torstar deal has caused her to rethink her largely hands-off approach to the news industry’s fate, Joly reiterated that the government is “looking to support local media while they transition to the internet.”

The closures announced today – many of which are effective immediately – will largely affect communities in eastern and southern Ontario.

Through the deal, Postmedia acquired 22 local newspapers and two Metro dailies from two Torstar subsidiaries. Postmedia said in a press release it plans to close all of those publications, except the Exeter Times-Advocate and the Exeter Weekender, by mid-January. The local papers that Postmedia will fold include Metro Ottawa, Metro Winnipeg, Belleville News, Kingston Heritage, St. Mary’s Journal-Argus as well as a number of Ottawa-area publications.

Meanwhile, Torstar acquired a total of 17 publications from Postmedia, including free dailies 24Hours Toronto and 24Hours Vancouver. The company said it will immediately close the two dailies, three of the seven daily Ontario newspapers it acquired, and the eight community newspapers purchased.

Four free dailies and 32 daily and community papers are being shuttered in total. The Postmedia closures will result in 244 layoffs, while Torstar’s will eliminate 46 full-time and part-time employees.

Postmedia CEO Paul Godfrey acknowledged in the company’s press release that their decision involves letting go of “many dedicated newspaper people.”

“However, the continuing costs of producing dozens of small community newspapers in these regions in the face of significantly declining advertising revenues means that most of these operations no longer have viable business models,” Godfrey wrote.

A spokesperson for Torstar said the company’s move to close 13 publications – including the Barrie Examiner, Orillia Packet & Times and Northumberland Today – was “clearly a difficult decision.”

“We did not take this decision lightly,” said Bob Hepburn, the Toronto Star’s director of community relations and communications – adding that the company took each paper’s financial performance into consideration.

In a company statement, Torstar’s President and CEO John Boynton said the deal will allow the company to “operate more efficiently through increased geographic synergies in a number of our primary regions.”

Postmedia and Torstar both claim the papers they are closing are located in communities that are served by other publications.

“We were not creating any news deserts,” Hepburn said of Torstar’s closures. “(The communities affected) will continue to be served by Metroland publications.”

Torstar will continue to operate and publish the St. Catharines Standard, Niagara Falls Review, Welland Tribune and Peterborough Examiner.

Both Postmedia and Torstar said Monday’s deal is “effectively a non-cash transaction” as the publications being exchanged “have approximately similar fair values.”

Here is a list of the publications Postmedia acquired from Torstar and has decided to close:
•Belleville News
•Brant News
•Central Hastings News
•Frontenac Gazette
•Kanata Kourier-Standard
•Kingston Heritage
•Meaford Express
•Metro Ottawa
•Metro Winnipeg
•Nepean/Barrhaven News
•Norfolk News
•Orleans News
•Ottawa East News
•Ottawa South News
•Ottawa West News
•Our London
•Quinte West News
•St. Lawrence News
•St. Mary’s Journal-Argus (and the St. Mary’s Weekender)
•St. Thomas/Elgin Weekly News
•Stittsville News
•Stratford City Gazette
•West Carleton Review

Here is a list of the publications Torstar acquired from Postmedia and has decided to close:
•24 Hours Toronto
•24 Hours Vancouver
•Barrie Examiner
•Bradford Times
•Collingwood Enterprise Bulletin
•Fort Erie Times
•Innisfil Examiner
•Inport News (Port Colborne)
•Niagara Advance
•Northumberland Today
•Orillia Packet & Times
•Pelham News
•Thorold Niagara News

___

With files from The Canadian Press

Torstar holds an investment in The Canadian Press as part of a joint agreement with a subsidiary of the Globe and Mail and the parent company of Montreal’s La Presse.


https://ipolitics.ca/2017/11/27/postmedia-close-local-newspapers-swap-torstar/
RCO





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PostPosted: Mon Nov 27, 2017 3:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Closure of Simcoe County newspapers a 'sad day'


Barrie Examiner, Orillia Packet and Times among papers shut down
2 shares
26 minutes ago by: Sue Sgambati

2017-11-27 Barrie Examiner sign

The Barrie Examiner sign on Bayfield St. on Nov. 27, 2017, the day the publication closed. Sue Sgambati/BarrieToday


Sixteen employees at the Barrie Examiner lost their jobs and 11 more people at the Orillia Packet and Times are out of work in a mega-newspaper swap between Torstar Corp. and Postmedia Network Inc.

Employees were told at 9 a.m. Monday that the long-time daily publications in Barrie and Orillia, along with counterpart Northumberland Today were shutting down effective immediately.

Eight community newspapers are also closing including the Bradford Times, Collingwood Enterprise Bulletin and the Innisfil Examiner.

The closure of the publications in Simcoe County and others across the chain affect a total of 46 full-time and part-time employees.


"It's a sad day for everybody at the papers in Simcoe County. I myself had been with the Packet and Times for just over ten years and I loved what I did and so did everybody else. We cared a lot about what we did and I feel really badly for those who don't have a job anymore," said Nathan Taylor, who was regional editor to the Simcoe County publications that closed.

"I am officially unemployed for the first time. It's a sad day for the media business, democracy, our community and my family. I had been at The Packet since 1991," tweeted Dave Dawson of the Packet and Times.

The Examiner was founded in 1864 and the Packet and Times had been publishing in Orillia since 1870.

"The employees were notified this morning. That was done in person. We had people at the Barrie Examiner and the Orillia Packet and Times. They were notified late last week to be there for a meeting this morning at 9 a.m.," said Bob Hepburn, director of community relations and communications at the Toronto Star.

The news was met initially with disbelief by many but shock by all.

"Devastating news that our city has lost the @BarrieExaminer. Thinking today of the incredible journalists, editors, and staff I've had the honour of working with. It was founded in 1864 and has served Barrie since then," tweeted Barrie Mayor Jeff Lehman.

"My reaction is shock and sadness. I know that the business that you're involved in has evolved or devolved over the last number of years. But still when you hear news like this, it's a sad story," Orillia Mayor Steve Clarke told BarrieToday in an interview.

"I've known many people from over the years. My heart goes out to them. It's also sad for democracy."

On the streets of downtown Barrie, the news of the Examiner closing was a bombshell.

"It's shocking. We've been here since 1968 and the Examiner has always been our go-to source for local news. I do get some of my news online but I still read a hard copy newspaper. And not everybody is online. What are those people going to do. It's just really sad. I feel terrible," said Tracey Baker.

But for Denise Tucker, a former advertising director at the Examiner, the mothballing of the iconic local paper was not surprising.

"A lot of people at the Barrie Examiner lost their jobs this morning. Merry Christmas," said Denise Tucker, a former advertising director at the Examiner.

"It's a shame to see the daily newspapers going down but it's understandable. When was the last time you read a daily newspaper?" said Tucker.

"It's too bad for all of those people who've been working there. some of them for a lot of years are now at the end of their careers in the newspaper industry and in the media industry probably. Great people. Really passionate about reporting and this city."

The employees will receive severance packages.


https://www.barrietoday.com/local-news/closure-of-simcoe-county-newspapers-a-sad-day-776417
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Postmedia to close more community newspapers

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