Archant taken over by rival newspaper publisher Newsquest

5:59 PM March 18, 2022

7:05 PM March 18, 2022

Archant Community Media, publisher of the Eastern Daily Press and East Anglian Daily Times, has been bought by Newsquest Media Group from private investment firm Rcapital.

No figure has been announced on the deal which will create a combined group – forming the second largest regional publishing group in the UK.

Archant, which also publishes the Norwich Evening News and the Ipswich Star, has been owned by Rcapital since September 2020 when it went into administration.

Newsquest chief executive, Henry Faure Walker, said: “We’re really looking forward to working with the Archant team who have done a phenomenal job rebuilding the business after it went into administration 18 months ago.

“The Archant strategy focused on building out digital marketing solutions and digital subscriptions is closely aligned with our own; and the additional scale that our combination brings will greatly assist Archant’s local news and Life brands in building a stronger future. “

Archant chief executive, Lorna Willis, said: “By bringing the best of Archant and Newsquest together we have the opportunity to lead the way in building an exciting future for regional media, a future that speaks to growth, innovation and sustainability, built on quality local journalism. “

Ash Reek, chairman of Archant, said: “Archant’s management team, led by Lorna Willis (CEO) and Nick Steven-Jones (CFO / COO), should be very proud of what they achieved over the past 18 months.

“With the support of Rcapital, they have formed a unique partnership with the courage and confidence to successfully transform this business.

“The working relationship has been fantastic from the outset and the progress we have made in a relatively short period is extremely impressive.

“I wish them every success for the future as they move into their next phase of Archant’s long and celebrated history.”

Archant owns a portfolio of leading local news brands principally in East Anglia, and also publishes a suite of successful regional County Life magazines.

The company which has its head office in Norwich employs 760 staff.

Newsquest, whose titles include the Northern Echo and Lancashire Telegraph, is owned by US group Gannett, publisher of the USA Today newspaper.

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