McClatchy/Cowles to Sell Magazine and Book Publishing Businesses

Posted on January 9, 1998

McClatchy Newspapers, Inc. and Cowles Media Company, announced agreements to sell the magazine and book publishing businesses currently owned by Cowles Media. Cowles Business Media, Inc. and Cowles Enthusiast Media, Inc. will be sold to PRIMEDIA Inc., and Cowles Creative Publishing, Inc. will be sold to a management group led by Iain Macfarlane, CCP's president.

CBM, CEM, and CCP were included in a November 14, 1997 agreement for McClatchy to acquire the stock of Cowles Media Company in a transaction valued at $1.4 billion. Cowles' principal asset is the Star Tribune newspaper serving the Twin Cities of Minneapolis and St. Paul. At the time the merger was announced, McClatchy indicated its intent to sell Cowles' non-newspaper assets. The transactions are expected to close in March 1998, pending regulatory approvals and shareholder approvals for the McClatchy/Cowles merger.

Gary Pruitt, McClatchy's President and Chief Executive Officer said, "Magazine and book publishing is not part of our core business, so it was always our intention to sell these non-newspaper assets as soon as possible and focus on operating the Star Tribune. We can now close the sale of these assets simultaneously with the closing of our merger with Cowles and use the proceeds to immediately reduce debt related to the Cowles transaction."

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