Black Press Group Ltd. is a Canadian publisher of prominent daily newspapers in Hawaii and Ohio, and numerous non-daily newspapers in Alberta and British Columbia, Canada, and (via Sound Publishing) the U.S. state of Washington.
The company is administered and majority owned by David Holmes Black (no relation to Canadian-born media mogul Conrad Black). The company is 20% owned by Torstar, publisher of the Toronto Star, and David Black's former employer.
|Black Press Group Ltd.|
|Headquarters||Surrey, British Columbia, Canada|
|Alberta, British Columbia, Hawaii, Ohio and Washington State|
|David Holmes Black (CEO)|
Rick O'Connor (COO)
|Products||Akron Beacon Journal, Honolulu Star-Advertiser, five other daily newspapers and more than 100 weekly newspapers|
|Owners||David Holmes Black (80%) |
|Subsidiaries||Oahu Publications Inc, Sound Publishing|
After working as a junior business analyst for the Toronto Star, Black purchased the Williams Lake Tribune of Williams Lake, British Columbia, from his father, Alan, in 1975. He bought a family-run newspaper in nearby Ashcroft in 1979, and his holdings expanded "exponentially" in the ensuing years.
There was never a big plan to get big. It's just that another opportunity would come over the hill. Usually an independent would phone, wanting to retire or sell out, asking if we were interested in buying them.— David Black
Though Black Press has focused its acquisitions mainly on building a province-wide network of community newspapers in British Columbia, and a similar operation (called Sound Publishing) across the border in Washington, the company has also invested in individual marquee daily products. In 2000, Black purchased the Honolulu Star-Bulletin of Hawaii (later merged with the competing Honolulu Advertiser, which Black bought in 2010). In 2006, the company acquired the Akron Beacon Journal, the former Knight Ridder flagship in Northeast Ohio.
On June 27, 2007, Black Press announced a $405 million takeover offer for Osprey Media, putting it in competition with Quebecor Media for Osprey's assets. Quebecor put in a higher bid and won ownership of Osprey.
In 2011, David Black was one of several newspaper industry veterans who joined together as investors in the San Francisco Newspaper Company to buy the former Hearst flagship The San Francisco Examiner, now a free daily newspaper. Although the transaction had been reported as a purchase for Black Press, David Black participated as a private investor and holds his shares in the Examiner separately from Black Press.
In 2013 Black Press and Glacier Media Inc. exchanged four community newspapers in British Columbia. That led to the closure of Abbotsford Times. In 2014, Black Press negotiated deals with Glacier Media Inc. to take effect in March 2015 that would exchange a dozen British Columbia newspapers that consolidated ownership of competing community papers on Vancouver Island and the Lower Mainland. Black Press obtained Harbour City Star, Cowichan Citizen, Parksville Oceanside Star, Tofino/Ucluelet Westerly News, Comox Valley Echo, Campbell River Courier, Surrey Now and Langley Advance.
Black Press owns two major metropolitan daily newspapers in the United States, and several dailies as part of its community newspaper chains in the Canadian and U.S. Pacific Northwest.
Black Press owns the daily Red Deer Advocate and several neighbouring weekly newspapers in Central Alberta, in addition to various local tourism and lifestyle publications. Newspapers in Black's Prairie Division are:
Black's original acquisitions form the core of the 320,552-circulation BC Interior Division, whose holdings extend 1,360 km from Trail near the Washington border to Smithers near the southern tip of Alaska. The wine country publications Grapes to Wine and Wine Trails are also part of this group. Following is a list of the group's community newspapers, most of which are biweekly, weekly, semiweekly or thrice-weekly, although the group also includes three small daily newspapers in Trail, Cranbrook and Kimberley:
Publications in Black's BC Lower Mainland Division circulate a total of 568,200 copies per week in the Vancouver area. This group includes the Chilliwack Progress, founded in 1891, which claims to be the oldest Canadian community newspaper continuously published under the same name. The group includes the lifestyle and real estate publications Indulge Magazine, New Home Living, New Local Home, North Shore Real Estate, and the following community newspapers:
The BC Vancouver Island Division includes the entertainment weekly Where Magazine and Real Estate Victoria, both covering Victoria, British Columbia and vicinity, and the following community newspapers (including the daily Alberni Valley Times, the Cowichan News Leader Pictorial, and the Nanaimo Daily News, the first two of which were closed in 2015 followed by closure of the Nanaimo Daily News in 2016):
In addition to the Honolulu Star-Advertiser, the largest daily newspaper in Hawaii, Black Press' subsidiary Oahu Publications Inc. also community newspapers, the entertainment weekly MidWeek, HILuxury magazine, and prints military newspapers for U.S. bases in Hawaii. Oahu Publications Inc. took full ownership of the San Francisco Media Company in 2014.
Sound Publishing Inc., a subsidiary of Black Press, is based in Everett, Washington and is the largest community news publisher by circulation in the state of Washington. The company's holdings include four daily newspapers, The Herald, the Peninsula Daily News, The Daily World and the Tacoma Daily Index government listings publication. All of Sound Publishing's products are printed at a central press plant in Everett, Washington. Sound Publishing acquired three newspapers in Alaska in 2018. Community newspapers owned by Sound Publishing are:
In 1998, company owner David Black instructed his British Columbia papers to publish a series of editorials opposing the Nisga'a Treaty, which was the first modern treaty in B.C. history, and not to publish editorials in favour of the treaty.
In January 1999, the NDP government filed a complaint to the B.C. Press Council against Black Press, arguing that its policy breached its duty to act in the public interest and violated the council's constitution. Black Press said that news coverage was not affected and editors were free to publish their opinions on their letters page.
The Press Council sided with Black Press based on finding that its newspapers "did in fact carry a diversity of opinion on the Nisga'a Treaty, including those of Premier Glen Clark, Liberal Leader Gordon Campbell, Reform Party President Bill Vander Zalm as well as those of ordinary British Columbians".
In August 2007, a story in the Victoria News sparked a complaint from an advertiser and led to the firing/resignation of three senior Black Press employees. Victoria News reporter Brennan Clarke quit the publication after a story he wrote about buying cheaper cars in the United States led to a complaint from Victoria car dealership Dave Wheaton Pontiac Buick GMC. Black Press claimed the article was not balanced, and said that reporters and editors should not purposely jeopardize advertising revenue with their stories, because that revenue pays their salaries. The company also fired the Victoria News long-time editor, Keith Norbury, in part because of the complaint, and Black Press's Vancouver Island Newsgroup regional editor, Brian Lepine, resigned in protest.
The Canadian Association of Journalists publicly questioned the credibility and independence of the Victoria News, wondering how many stories Black Press kills behind the scenes because of advertising concerns.
African-American newspapers are newspapers in the United States serving African-American communities. Samuel Cornish and John Brown Russwurm started the first African-American periodical called Freedom's Journal in 1827. During the antebellum South, other African-American newspapers sprang forth, such as The North Star founded by Frederick Douglass.
As African Americans moved to urban centers around the country, virtually every large city with a significant African-American population soon had newspapers directed towards African Americans. These newspapers gained audiences outside African-American circles. In the 21st century, papers (like newspapers of all sorts) have shut down, merged, or shrunk in response to the dominance of the Internet in terms of providing free news and information, and providing cheap advertising.Akron Beacon Journal
The Akron Beacon Journal is a morning newspaper in Akron, Ohio, United States. Owned by GateHouse Media, it is the sole daily newspaper in Akron and is distributed throughout Northeast Ohio. The paper's coverage focuses on local news. The Beacon Journal has won four Pulitzer Prizes: in 1968, 1971, 1987 and 1994.Freedom's Journal
Freedom's Journal was the first African-American owned and operated newspaper published in the United States. Founded by Rev. Peter Williams, Jr. and other free black men in New York City, it was published weekly starting with the 16 March 1827 issue. Freedom's Journal was superseded in 1829 by The Rights of All, published between 1829 and 1830 by Samuel Cornish, the former senior editor of the Journal.Hawaii Tribune-Herald
Hawaii Tribune-Herald is a daily newspaper based in Hilo, Hawaii. It is owned and published by Oahu Publications Inc., a subsidiary of Black Press.Honolulu Star-Advertiser
The Honolulu Star-Advertiser is the largest daily newspaper in Hawaii, formed in 2010 with the merger of The Honolulu Advertiser and the Honolulu Star-Bulletin after the acquisition of the former by Black Press, which already owned the latter. The paper sells for $1 in Oahu ($1.25 for other islands) daily or $2.25 ($3.25 for other islands) Sundays/Thanksgiving Day; prices are higher outside Hawaii.Honolulu Star-Bulletin
The Honolulu Star-Bulletin was a daily newspaper based in Honolulu, Hawaii, United States. At the time publication ceased on June 6, 2010, it was the second largest daily newspaper in the state of Hawaiʻi (after the Honolulu Advertiser). The Honolulu Star-Bulletin, along with a sister publication called MidWeek, was owned by Black Press of Victoria, British Columbia, Canada and administered by a council of local Hawaii investors. The daily merged with the Advertiser on June 7, 2010, to form the Honolulu Star-Advertiser, after Black Press's attempts to find a buyer fell through.MidWeek
MidWeek is a weekly United States tabloid shopper and advertisement periodical published in Honolulu, Hawaii and distributed throughout the Islands of Oahu and Kauai. It is owned by Black Press and is a sister publication of the Honolulu Star-Advertiser.Nanaimo Daily News
The Nanaimo Daily News was a Canadian daily newspaper published weekdays in Nanaimo, on Vancouver Island in British Columbia for 141 years until closing in January 2016.
The paper's final owner was Black Press, which also publishes the Alberni Valley Times and the Ladysmith-Chemainus Chronicle, and several other weekly newspapers on the island.National Newspaper Publishers Association
The National Newspaper Publishers Association (NNPA), was founded in 1940 when John H. Sengstacke, of the Chicago Defender, organized a meeting with other African-American publishers intended for "harmonizing our energies in a common purpose for the benefit of Negro journalism". The group decided to form the National Negro Publishers Association. In 1956, the trade association was renamed the National Newspaper Publishers Association.In the early 21st century, the NNPA is composed of more than 200 black newspapers in the United States and the Virgin Islands. They have a combined readership of 15 million, and the organization has created an electronic news service, BlackPressUsa web site, which enables newspapers to provide real-time news and information to its national constituency. "In 2000, the NNPA launched NNPA Media Services — a print and web advertising placement and press release distribution service."New Pittsburgh Courier
The New Pittsburgh Courier is a weekly newspaper catering to African Americans, based in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, United States. It is owned by Real Times.
The newspaper is named after the original Pittsburgh Courier (1907-65), which in the 1930s and 1940s was one of the largest and most influential African-American newspapers in the country, with a nationwide circulation of more than 350,000.After circulation declines in the 1950s and 1960s, the original Courier was purchased in 1965 by John H. Sengstacke, publisher of The Chicago Daily Defender, in 1966. He reorganized the paper under a new name — the New Pittsburgh Courier — to avoid paying several outstanding tax bills and invoices. He later commented:
"The Courier had a great history. The loss would not only be a big loss for the city of Pittsburgh, but a devastating loss for the entire country. The Black press is the only true voice Black people have. I've worked tireless to make sure that it is heard loud and clear throughout this country.
He re-opened it in 1967 under the new name. The New Pittsburgh Courier joined Sengstacke's three other newspapers in a chain of prominent African-American publications, including the Defender. In 1974 Sengstacke appointed Hazel B. Garland as the new editor-in-chief of the New Pittsburgh Courier, making her the first African-American woman in history to be editor of a national newspaper. When asked about his decision, Sengstacke replied: "I have supreme confidence in Hazel, and believe that she will continue to do a great job as editor-in-chief as she did as city editor. She has proven herself over the many years of dedication to the Courier and the Negro cause. She will be a guiding force in leading this paper to bigger and better things in the future." Two years later, the paper won the John B. Russwurm Award for the best national African-American newspaper.Following Sengstacke's death in 1997, what was then a four-paper chain was held in a family trust until 2003. It was sold that year for nearly $12 million to Real Times, a group of investors with several business and family ties to Sengstacke.Among the new owners was Sengstacke's nephew Thomas Sengstacke Picou, who said in 2002 that among his plans for the New Pittsburgh Courier were more emphasis on in-depth features and arts, creating a web presence — which neither it nor the Defender had at the time — and a change in its political outlook from liberal to "conservative independence".O'Day Short
O'Day H. Short (died January 22, 1946) was an African American refrigerator engineer who broke the color barrier in Fontana, California after buying land and constructing a house south of Base Line Road. Short contacted the FBI and the black press after receiving a warning of imminent violence from vigilantes. On December 16, 1945, the house exploded in a fireball. His wife Helen, and young children Barry and Carol Ann died due to their burns by the following day. O'Day would linger for a month before succumbing to his injuries.Red Deer Advocate
The Red Deer Advocate is a daily newspaper in Red Deer, Alberta, Canada.
Published by Black Press, the newspaper was first established in 1901 as the Red Deer Echo, changing its name to Alberta Advocate in 1903 and Red Deer Advocate in 1906. Originally it was a weekly newspaper issued on Fridays.The Advocate now publishes daily, from Tuesday to Friday as the Monday edition was dropped late in 2016, with the slogan "Central Alberta's Daily Newspaper". The newspaper publishes weekly supplements called Friday Forward (for city residents) and Central Alberta Life (for rural communities), and owns three weekly newspapers covering outlying Alberta towns: the Ponoka News in Ponoka, the Rimbey Review in Rimbey and the Stettler Independent in Stettler. In addition to printing its own weekly and daily products, the Advocate presses also print, by contract, several other newspapers covering communities in Alberta, British Columbia, Saskatchewan and Manitoba.SF Weekly
SF Weekly is a free alternative weekly newspaper in San Francisco, California. The newspaper, distributed throughout the San Francisco Bay Area every Thursday, is published by the San Francisco Newspaper Company. Founded locally in the late 1970s by Christopher Hildreth and Edward Bachman and originally named ‘San Francisco Music Calendar, the Magazine or Poster Art’, Christopher saw a need for local artists to have a place to advertise performances and articles. The key feature was the centerfold calendar listings for local art events. Bought by Village Voice Media (then New Times Media) in 1995, SF Weekly has garnered notable national journalism awards. The paper sponsored the SF Weekly Music Awards, also known as the "Wammies."
In September 2012, Village Voice Media executives Scott Tobias, Christine Brennan and Jeff Mars bought Village Voice Media's papers and associated web properties from its founders and formed Voice Media Group. Four months later, SF Weekly was sold to The San Francisco Media Company, owners of The San Francisco Examiner and long-time rivals San Francisco Bay Guardian, giving the publishers control of three of the four major English-language newspapers in San Francisco. In 2014, San Francisco Media Co. became fully owned by Black Press.The Garden Island
The Garden Island is a daily newspaper based in Lihue, Hawaii, covering the islands of Kauai and Niihau. The Garden Island began publication in 1902. It was formerly owned by Scripps League Newspapers, which was acquired by Pulitzer in 1996; Lee Enterprises acquired Pulitzer in 2005. Oahu Publications Inc., publisher of the Honolulu Star-Advertiser, acquired The Garden Island newspaper from Lee Enterprises in January 2013.The Herald (Everett)
The Daily Herald is a newspaper based in Everett, Washington. It is owned by Sound Publishing, Inc. The paper serves as a major news source for residents of Snohomish County.The Honolulu Advertiser
The Honolulu Advertiser was a daily newspaper published in Honolulu, Hawaii. At the time publication ceased on June 6, 2010, it was the largest daily newspaper in the American state of Hawaii. It published daily with special Sunday and Internet editions. The Honolulu Advertiser was the parent publisher of Island Weekly, Navy News, Army Weekly, Ka Nupepa People, West Oahu People, Leeward People, East Oahu People, Windward People, Metro Honolulu People, and Honolulu People small, community-based newspapers for the public.
The Honolulu Advertiser has had a succession of owners since it began publishing in 1856 under the name the Pacific Commercial Advertiser. On February 25, 2010, Black Press, which owned the Honolulu Star-Bulletin, purchased The Honolulu Advertiser from Gannett Pacific Corporation, which acquired the Advertiser in 1992 after it had sold the Star-Bulletin to another publisher that later sold it to Black Press in 2000. On May 3, 2010, a new company set up by Black Press, HA Management, took over operations of Advertiser and merged it with the Star-Bulletin on June 7, 2010, to form the Honolulu Star-Advertiser.The San Francisco Examiner
The San Francisco Examiner is a newspaper distributed in and around San Francisco, California, and published since 1863.
The longtime "Monarch of the Dailies" and flagship of the Hearst Corporation chain, the Examiner converted to free distribution early in the 21st century and is owned by the San Francisco Media Company LLC. The San Francisco Examiner was sold to Black Press Group, a Canadian media publisher, in 2011. As of 2014, The San Francisco Media Company LLC is held under Oahu Publications Inc., a subsidiary of Black Press Group Ltd. The Examiner claims to be the highest circulation newspaper in the San Francisco and Peninsula area.Times Colonist
The Times Colonist is an English-language daily newspaper in Victoria, British Columbia, Canada. It was formed by the merger in 1980 of the Victoria Daily Times, established in 1884, and the British Colonist (later the Daily Colonist), established in 1858 by Amor De Cosmos who was later British Columbia's second Premier. The British Colonist was B.C.'s first paper "of any permanence". De Cosmos was the editor until 1866 when D.W. Higgins took over for the next twenty years.Local news receives the greatest prominence in the Times Colonist. Stories and photographs about Greater Victoria are often featured on the front page. The newspaper also has national and international stories, plus sections covering the arts, sports, and business. The Times Colonist also has a website as well as an e-edition, which offers a digital replica of the printed pages.
According to the Audit Bureau of Circulations, the average daily paid circulation for the Times Colonist, Tuesday to Friday, was 49,343 for the twelve months ending December, 2013. Since then, paid circulation has dropped to about 45,000 copies daily. The Times Colonist is published six days a week (Tuesday to Sunday) and is sold by subscription or at newsstands.
The newsroom of the Times Colonist has about 35 people, working as reporters, columnists, photographers, editors, layout designers, graphic artists and editorial assistants.
In 2017, the newspaper building was sold, with the Times Colonist signing a long-term lease for most of the main floor once the rejuvenation of the building is complete. In 2018, the newspaper announced it would contract out printing of the paper, allowing it to focus on the content and distribution of the newspaper. Since October 1, 2018, the newspaper has been printed by Black Press in Ladysmith.
The first 110 years of the British Colonist (later, the Daily Colonist) are available online, with free access, through the efforts of the Times Colonist, the University of Victoria and other funding partners. The digitized newspaper collection is the most popular database on the university's website.West Hawaii Today
West Hawaii Today is a Kailua-Kona, Hawai'i based daily newspaper. It is owned and published by Oahu Publications Inc, a subsidiary of Black Press.
Black Press Ltd.
|United States newspapers|