Lee completes $694 million deal for 16 papers
DAVENPORT, Iowa -- Lee Enterprises Inc. announced Monday it has completed the $694 million purchase of 16 daily newspapers from Howard Publications, including one that is jointly owned.
The Howard newspapers have a daily circulation of 479,000. The acquisitions raise Lee's daily circulation by more than 75 percent, to more than 1.1 million daily in 45 newspapers across 18 states.
Lee paid $435 million in cash for the Howard newspapers and borrowed the rest.
Lee also said Monday it had completed acquisition of a 50 percent stake in another daily newspaper through Central Wisconsin Newspapers, a subsidiary of Madison Newspapers Inc., which is 50 percent owned by Lee.
Central Wisconsin Newspapers' acquisition of the Daily Citizen, a 10,250-circulation daily in Beaver Dam, includes two weekly newspapers and five specialty publications.