U.S. News

Trinity Sells Some Regional Titles to Daily Mail


British newspaper group Trinity Mirror said on Friday it would sell some regional titles in London and Southeast England to the Daily Mail group for 64 million pounds ($129 million) in cash.

The Daily Mirror owner said in December that it would sell its sports unit, including the Racing Post, and some regional titles following a review after a drop in profits due to a weak advertising environment and falling circulation.

In a statement, the Daily Mail said the titles, which include the Croydon Advertiser, would be acquired by its regional Northcliffe unit and it expected the transaction to be earnings enhancing from the date of the acquisition.

Daily Mail said the assets had an adjusted earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) of 7.3 million pounds for 2006.

Completion is expected later this month.

The Daily Mail said its regional unit, which has been hit by lucrative classified adverts moving to the Internet, had recorded slowly improving ad revenues which were up 0.3% in the quarter to end of June compared to a decline of 1% in the previous quarter.

"Today's acquisitions strengthen our publishing reach in a region demonstrating strong economic growth where digital opportunities are particularly attractive," said Michael Pelosi, managing director of Northcliffe.

"We are acquiring strong products which are at the heart of their local communities."

Trinity said the sale of the sports and other regional units was expected to be completed by the third quarter.