News Corp. blazes acquisition trail amid Dow Jones turmoil

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News Corp., owner of The New York Post, bought two more New York City-based weekly newspapers The Bronx Times and The Bronx Times Reporter on Monday.

The two papers have a combined circulation of more than 40,000. Combined with News Corp.'s other local papers in Queens and Brooklyn, the purchase gives the conglomerate a circulation of 300,000 weekly papers in New York. Most of these papers are free.

"It's great for selling combined ad buys with The New York Post," said Les Goldstein, senior vice president of News Corp., in a statement. News Corp. was unavailable for further comment.

News Corp. has recently grabbed headlines with CEO Rupert Murdoch's bid to buy Dow Jones. The company's quieter absorption of smaller papers, including last fall's purchase of 28 weeklies from The TimesLedger and The Courier-Life newspaper groups, reveals a different business strategy.

Many of these smaller papers are directed at specific neighborhoods and communities. This local focus helps deepen the reach of News Corp.'s advertising partners and complements the content of larger operations like the Post.

News Corp.'s newspaper arm plans to continue its expansion in the New York local market. The company will up circulation of local papers in Howard Beach and Richmond Hill in Queens and introduce new weeklies in Williamsburg and Greenpoint, Brooklyn.

News Corp. is an entertainment company with operations in the US, the UK, Continental Europe, Australia, and Asia Pacific. It has holdings in film, television, cable network programming, direct broadcast satellite television, magazines and inserts, newspapers and book publishing. Major brand names include Fox broadcasting, HarperCollins book publishing and MySpace.

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