New Media Investment Group Inc., the parent company of The Providence Journal, has agreed to purchase Gannett Co., the publisher of USA Today, among other newspapers across the nation, for roughly $1.4 billion. If the deal goes through, it will put 263 daily media outlets in 47 states under control of one company, one that has been showing profitability by cutting staff and buying new news organizations, all the while paying significant dividends to its shareholders, which include private equity firms. And now one of the nation’s largest private equity firms, Apollo Global Management, is loaning New Media nearly $1.8 billion to complete the deal.
With its record of staff cuts and facility consolidation, is New Media going to increase investment in newspapers like the Journal? Or will Rhode Island continue to see newsroom cuts and a diminished news product?
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