McClatchy Sells The Newspaper Network to AP, Vertis

Posted on April 18, 2003

The McClatchy Company has entered into separate agreements to sell the assets of The Newspaper Network, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary, to The Associated Press (AP) and Vertis, Inc. The transactions are expected to be completed in June 2003. The Newspaper Network, Inc. (TNN) is a national sales and marketing company that provides services to both advertisers and newspapers.

AP, headquartered in New York, NY, will purchase TNN's ad-processing operations responsible for all placement and billing processes. The acquisition will complement AP's existing ad-processing business, AP AdVantage. Both processing operations are located in Sacramento.

Vertis, headquartered in Baltimore, MD, will purchase the sales, marketing and media planning assets of TNN and operate them as The Newspaper Network, a Vertis company. That company will continue to do business from current TNN offices in Sacramento, Atlanta, New York and Greenville, SC. AP and Vertis have entered into an agreement for AdVantage to provide and manage Vertis' TNN placement and billing services.

Tom Brettingen, AP vice president of business development, said, "The acquisition demonstrates AP's commitment to growing our ad management services business. The TNN operation is a major addition to our present AP AdVantage ad-processing business and our AP AdSEND ad delivery business."

AP has operated AdSEND since 1994 and transmits about 1 million advertisements a year to newspapers in the United States. AP entered the ad- processing business in late 2001 with the acquisition of the Newspaper Industry Communications Center (NICC) from the Newspaper Association of America. Ad processing comprises delivery of insertion orders from advertisers or ad agencies, approval or modification of the orders by newspapers, collection of tearsheets, collection of newspaper invoices, resolution of invoice discrepancies, consolidation of bills to advertisers, and cash processing.