Philadelphia Media Network sells Broad Street newspaper division

Posted: December 11, 2010

Philadelphia Media Network Inc., owner of The Inquirer, Philadelphia Daily News, and Philly.com, is selling the community newspaper division that includes the Northeast Times and My Community Trend.

The buyer is Broad Street Media L.L.C., a new company whose investors include Clifford and Stuart Richner of Richner Communications Inc., which publishes 28 community newspapers and shoppers, mostly on Long Island, N.Y., and publishing executive Darwin Oordt.

Terms were not disclosed. The new owners have signed an agreement to buy the Broad Street Publications division and said in a statement they intended to "retain substantially all current employees" and maintain its offices in Trevose and Cherry Hill.

Broad Street, with 55 publications and related websites, employs about 110 people. Other publications in the deal include the Star newspapers, Employment Weekly, Homes and Living, Adult 55+, and Senior Resource.

Michael Kuritzkes, interim general counsel for Philadelphia Media Network, said the community newspaper division "was just not core to our business and we were not succeeding at running that enterprise profitably."

Philadelphia Media Network, owned by 32 financial institutions, bought The Inquirer, Daily News, and Philly.com website at a bankruptcy auction on Sept. 23.

Oordt has extensive experience with community newspapers. He is chief executive of the N.J. Media Group L.L.C. in East Hanover, which publishes 18 community papers in North Jersey. He was chief executive of Broad Street Publications in 2005, when it was owned by Knight Ridder Inc.

Oordt said the first thing he would do is redesign My Community Trend and switch to mailed circulation from carriers. "It's a business I've been in since 1972," he said of community newspapers during a phone interview Friday. "I think it has a great future."


Contact staff writer Bob Fernandez at 215-854-5897 or bob.fernandez@phillynews.com.

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