The Santa Cruz Sentinel was sold to a company controlled by Dean Singleton’s MediaNews Group for $45 million, according to documents filed Tuesday with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Page 20 of MediaNews Group’s latest quarterly financial statement describes the sale of the 25,000-circulation daily to California Newspapers Partnership. MediaNews owns 54 percent of the partnership, with the remaining shares held by Gannett Co. and Stephens Newspapers of Little Rock, Ark.
- COMPS: By comparison, Hearst acquired the 67,000-circulation Torrance Daily Breeze and three weekly newspapers in Southern California for $25.6 million in December. Last August, the partnership paid $736.8 million for the Mercury News, Contra Costa Times, Palo Alto Daily News and related assets. Also in August, Hearst bought the Monterey Herald and St. Paul (Minn.) Pioneer Press for $263.2 million.
In October, Dow Jones & Co. sold the Sentinel and five other dailies in other parts of the country to Alabama-based Community Newspaper Holdings Inc. for $282.5 million. At the time, MediaNews had bid on the Sentinel, but Dow Jones wanted to sell the five papers as a package, not individually to different owners. The Sentinel was Community Newspaper’s only asset west of Texas, however, and soon the firm agreed to sell it to MediaNews, which owns 11 dailies in the Bay Area.
After taking over, MediaNews has voided the contract with the paper’s unionized press operators, shut down the paper’s presses and started printing the Sentinel in San Jose. MediaNews is also planning to sell the paper’s 54,000-square-foot downtown building and move the staff into leased space. [Feb. 3, MediaNews buys Santa Cruz Sentinel] [March 9, Santa Cruz daily to be printed in San Jose]