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Gannett To Separate Newspaper Division As Print Advertising Sales Dwindle

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WESTCHESTER COUNTY, N.Y. -- Gannett Co., Inc., the owner of The Journal News in Westchester, announced Tuesday morning it plans to spin off its publishing business into its own publicly traded company as the future of print continues to look bleak.

An announcement on the website of its flagship newspaper, USA Today, described the development as "a move aimed at unlocking the value of more profitable assets as print advertising sales continue to dwindle."

Gannett's new broadcasting and digital business, which includes 46 television stations, will be led by current president and chief executive officer Gracia Martore.

"We are creating two companies that will be among the largest and strongest in their peer groups, with increased abilities to focus resources on the most promising areas of their businesses," Martore said in a statement.

Gannett's announcement drew quick reaction in media circles, with many seeing it as another sign of the demise of print.

Daily Voice Founder and CEO Carll Tucker was a longtime community newspaper publisher before selling Cross RIver, N.Y.-based Trader Publications to Gannett in 1999.

"This will accelerate the demise of newspapers, which is already rapid," Tucker said. "The resultant publishing companies will have less money and talent to work with."

Both Gannett's broadcasting/digital and publishing divisions will remain headquartered in McLean, Va., Gannett said.

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