Bay Area MNG papers, Santa Rosa Press Democrat buyer have a common shareholder

One of the owners of the MediaNews Group’s papers in the Bay Area, billionaire Warren Stephens, is also a partner in the group that has acquired the Santa Rosa Press Democrat and 15 other newspapers owned by The New York Times Co. Stephens Media Group owns 26.28% of the MediaNews Group papers in the Bay Area, such as the San Jose Mercury News, Contra Costa Times and Marin Independent Journal. Gannett holds a 19.49% stake and MediaNews is the majority

Continue reading

Doug Wilks moving on to Deseret News

Doug Wilks, local/regional editor at the Santa Rosa Press Democrat, is moving to Utah to become managing editor of the Deseret Media Companies News Division. In his new capacity, Wilks will oversee an integrated newsroom that provides content to the Deseret News, KSL-TV, KSL NewsRadio and their websites, all properties of the Mormon Church. Wilks has been at the Press Democrat for the past 12 years.

Press Democrat launches digital ad agency

The Santa Rosa Press Democrat has created a digital advertising and marketing agency that builds and hosts custom websites for local businesses. The PD Media Lab, overseen by Digital Director Greg Retsinas, specializes in search engine optimization, mobile and tablet platforms, social media and reputation management, e-commerce and digital advertising. “We’ve been building successful websites and mobile sites for our own business,” Press Democrat publisher Bruce Kyse said in a statement. “Now we can give other businesses the opportunity to

Continue reading

NY Times in talks to sell Santa Rosa Press Democrat

The Santa Rosa Press Democrat is among the 16 local newspapers The New York Times Co. is in talks to sell to Halifax Media Holdings, a newspaper company based in Daytona Beach, Fla. The Wall Street Journal quoted an analyst at Barclays Capital as saying that the 16 papers could fetch between $150 million and $175 million, based on their earnings. The Times announced it was selling its regional papers just days after its CEO, Janet Robinson, announced she will

Continue reading

Santa Rosa PD publisher quits chamber board

The Santa Rosa Press Democrat reports that its publisher, Bruce Kyse, has resigned from the board of the Santa Rosa Chamber of Commerce after that organization decided to start endorsing political candidates. Kyse said he wanted to avoid the appearance of a conflict. The paper, owned by The New York Times Co., has an editorial board that also endorses candidates, and Kyse sits on that board. “I did not want the perception that it (the chamber) was influencing our decisions,”

Continue reading

Chronicle circulation plunges 25%

The Chronicle’s circulation fell by 25.8% in the past year. Of the nation’s 25 largest newspapers, the Chron reported the largest percentage decrease. The Chron’s daily circulation now stands at 251,782, down from 339,430 a year ago. Sales of the Chron’s Sunday edition fell by 22.9%, to 306,705. In one year, the Chron lost 87,648 daily customers and 91,411 Sunday customers. The figures are from the Audit Bureau of Circulation’s FAS-FAX reports, which were released today. In San Jose, the

Continue reading

Press Democrat workers reject contract

The Guild unit at the Santa Rosa Press Democrat reports that workers at the paper have rejected a new contract that called for a continuation of an earlier 2.5 percent wage cut plus a new 3 percent cut. The Guild says 80 percent of its members voted, and 81 percent of them turned down the contract. Management suggested a yes vote would mean no more layoffs, but Publisher Bruce Kyse wouldn’t offer any guarantee, the Guild said. The Guild unit

Continue reading

NYT’s Press Democrat to cut payroll 10%

“What affects our advertisers, in the end, affects us,” Santa Rosa Press Democrat publisher Bruce Kyse told his employees yesterday as he announced that the New York Times’ owned paper has been told to cut its payroll by 10 percent next year. Kyse said the PD, with 325 employees, will cut costs by reducing salaries, offering buyouts and, if necessary, laying off workers. A report in today’s PD noted that major advertisers such as Gottschalks and Mervyns have gone bankrupt.

Continue reading

Former Web managers sue Santa Rosa paper

Two women who formerly managed Santa Rosa Press Democrat’s Web site are suing the newspaper, alleging sex discrimination, harassment and other workplace violations. According to a report in the PD, Leigh Behrens, who was online director at pressdemocrat.com for almost two years, and Laurie Barton, the site’s executive producer, said they were targeted by jealous managers from the print side of the newspaper owned by The New York Times Co. According to the lawsuit, Behrens’ detractors “appeared clearly upset that

Continue reading

NY Times pay cuts extend to Santa Rosa

The Santa Rosa Press Democrat will cut most nonunion employees’ pay by 2.5 percent as part of a cost-savings move by its parent company, the New York Times Co., the PD reported today. Employees will be given five additional paid days off as part of the wage change. The NYT Co. will also cut wages for employees of its North Bay Business Journal and Argus Courier. Of the 365 full-time and part-time employees at the three Sonoma County publications, the

Continue reading