VVM to Sell Cleveland Scene to Times-Shamrock

june 20, 2008  09:24 am
June 20, 2008
For Immediate Release

Andy Van De Voorde
Executive Associate Editor
Village Voice Media
andy.vandevoorde (at) villagevoicemedia.com

Village Voice Media announced today it is selling its award-winning weekly newspaper Cleveland Scene to Times-Shamrock Communications.

Terms of the purchase agreement are not being disclosed; the deal is expected to close on June 25.

VVM purchased Scene in 1998 and transformed it from a music paper to an alternative weekly offering in-depth investigative reporting and magazine style feature writing, along with authoritative music, film, food and arts coverage.

Under VVM ownership, Scene has been named the best non-daily newspaper in Ohio multiple times by both the Cleveland Press Club and the Ohio Society of Professional Journalists, and its writers and editors have received more than 100 national and state reporting awards.

In 2004, the paper was named the top paper in its circulation class by the Missouri Lifestyle Journalism Awards, a national competition in which it bested both dailies and weeklies across the country.

VVM chief executive officer Jim Larkin lauded Scene's accomplishments over the past decade.

"We more than achieved our journalistic goals in Cleveland," said Larkin. "This is a staff of remarkably talented and hard-working people. Unfortunately, after ten years, we weren't able to achieve our financial objectives."

Times-Shamrock, based in Scranton, Pennsylvania, owns 17 radio stations and more than 30 newspapers, including its flagship Scranton Times-Tribune. It also owns six alternative weeklies, including the Baltimore City Paper, the Detroit Metro Times, the Orlando Weekly and the San Antonio Current.

Village Voice Media is the nation's largest publisher of alternative weeklies; once the sale of Scene is complete, it will own fifteen papers, including the flagship Village Voice in New York City, the LA Weekly, Phoenix New Times, Miami New Times and Denver Westword.