Transcontinental Buys Newspaper Group For $255 Million

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Commercial printing house Transcontinental Group said yesterday it had purchased several newspapers and other publications from the CanWest Global Communications chain for $255 million, which it called the largest transaction in company history.

The acquisition includes 12 community newspapers, of which 10 are dailies, and 32 other publications, all located in the four Atlantic provinces and Saskatchewan. In addition, Transcontinental acquired a new printing facility as part of the deal and becomes the printer of the National Post newspaper for Canada's Atlantic provinces.

In total, the assets purchased by Transcontinental, Montreal, employ approximately 900 people and generated $100 million a year in revenue. The company now owns a total of 79 community newspapers in eight provinces and 83 other publications.

Transcontinental, which also provides printing services to direct marketers, has recently expanded its production capabilities in Mexico with its purchase of book printer Editorial Offset and its expansion of its interactive marketing print operation in the Philadelphia area.

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