The McClatchy Company is a publicly traded American publishing company based in Sacramento, California, and incorporated in Delaware. It operates 29 daily newspapers in fourteen states and has an average weekday circulation of 1.6 million and Sunday circulation of 2.4 million. In 2006, it purchased Knight Ridder, which at the time was the second-largest newspaper company in the United States (Gannett was and remains the largest). In addition to its daily newspapers, McClatchy also operates several websites and community papers, as well as a news agency, McClatchyDC, focused on political news from Washington, D.C.
|The McClatchy Company|
|Traded as||NYSE: MNI|
|Founded||February 3, 1857|
(President and CEO)
|Revenue||US$977 million (2016)|
|US$22.5 million (2016)|
|−US$34.1 million (2016)|
Number of employees
|5,600 full and part-time (2015)|
The company originated with The Daily Bee, first published in Sacramento, California on February 3, 1857 by Native American writer Rollin Ridge. James McClatchy joined Ridge as a partner and took over as editor. Known as a supporter of the people's interests against corporations and corrupt politicians, McClatchy made The Bee a bastion of progressive reformism. Upon McClatchy's death in 1883, the paper's leadership passed to James' son, Charles Kenny McClatchy, who with his brother Valentine Stuart, bought out the Ridge family's interests. The two modernized the paper with the formation of McClatchy Newspapers through the founding of the Fresno Bee, and acquisition of the Modesto Bee. C.K. McClatchy's legacy to the region has been memorialized in the C.K. McClatchy High School in Sacramento, which opened in 1937, about a year after his death.
For most of its history, the company was focused on the newspaper business in California's Sacramento Valley and San Joaquin Valley. In 1978, the 4th generation Carlos K. McClatchy took over the company and guided the media company toward the modern publicly-owned The McClatchy Company through further acquisitions of out-of-state newspapers, Anchorage Daily News in Anchorage, Alaska, and the Tri-City Herald in Kennewick, Washington.
McClatchy also acquired then-ABC affiliate KOVR from Metromedia in 1963. The company's own Modesto Bee reported the sale of the station. It was sold to The Outlet Company in 1978 and today exists as a CBS owned-and-operated station.
In 1990, McClatchy acquired three dailies in South Carolina: The Herald in Rock Hill, The Island Packet in Hilton Head, and The Beaufort Gazette of Beaufort. In 1995, it acquired The News & Observer of Raleigh, North Carolina, and in 1998, it bought the Star Tribune of Minneapolis.
The company's biggest acquisition occurred on June 27, 2006 when McClatchy purchased Knight Ridder. Because McClatchy was so much smaller than Knight Ridder at the time, one observer equated the deal as "a dolphin swallowing a small whale." The purchase price of $40 and 0.5118 shares of McClatchy Class A stock per share was valued in total at about $4 billion in cash and stock. The company also assumed $2 billion in debt. This purchase added 20 newspapers to the company stable and the immediate sale (over the next five weeks) of 12 publications including the St. Paul Pioneer Press, San Jose Mercury News and The Philadelphia Inquirer. Those sales were completed on August 2, 2006.
In July 2008, McClatchy sold the company's digital advertising network "Real Cities" to a Chicago-based marketing firm named Centro. The "Real Cities" network was liquidated by Centro the following month.
The company also owns a portfolio of digital assets, including 15.0% of CareerBuilder, LLC, which operates CareerBuilder.com; 25.6% of Classified Ventures, LLC, a company that offers classified websites, such as the auto website Cars.com; and 33.3% of HomeFinder, LLC, which operates the online real estate website HomeFinder.com. McClatchy also owns 49.5% of the voting stock and 70.6% of the nonvoting stock of The Seattle Times Company.
In January 2017, former Yahoo! and EarthLink executive Craig Forman was appointed as its new president and chief executive officer (CEO). Forman, a private investor and McClatchy board member, succeeded Patrick Talamantes, who was CEO the previous four years.
In February 2019, Forman emailed all staff to say about 10 percent of the newspaper chain's employees would be offered voluntary buyouts.
As of 2015, McClatchy had approximately 5,600 full and part-time employees. The company has two classes of stock, allowing the founding McClatchy family to retain control. In the Knight Ridder purchase, for example, McClatchy shareholders did not need to act in approving the purchase because the family had already voted their shares in favor.
Editor and Publisher reported in October 2006 that McClatchy revenue ending August 2006 was down over one percent from August 2005. Between the announced purchase of Knight Ridder in March 2006 and late 2009, the stock value of McClatchy (MNI) declined significantly. On December 18, 2008, McClatchy common stock fell below $1 per share. The market capitalization of the company fell below $100 million, down over 98% since the purchase of Knight Ridder in early 2006. In 2010–2011, the stock had recovered off of its low, but was still down over 90% from the peak.
In 2016, McClatchy approved a 1 for 10 reverse stock split that boosted the price of its shares to over $11.
McClatchy has an Internet subsidiary, McClatchy Interactive (formerly known as Nando Media), which provides business support and material for Internet media (part of the News & Observer purchase). Other operations include Newsprint Ventures Inc., a consortium that operates the Ponderay newsprint mill near Spokane, Washington.
McClatchy also inherited a partnership with the Tribune Company in the news service Knight Ridder-Tribune Information Services, now McClatchy-Tribune Information Services (MCT), when it acquired Knight Ridder. In 2014, Tribune bought out McClatchy's share of the company and its headquarters moved to Chicago.
McClatchyDC is a news agency that distributes original reporting based out of McClatchy's Washington, D.C. bureau, which was acquired from Knight Ridder. It is the largest client of the McClatchy-Tribune Information Services.
In 2008, McClatchy's bureau chief in D.C., John Walcott, was the first recipient of the I. F. Stone Medal for Journalistic Independence, awarded by the Nieman Foundation for Journalism. In accepting the award, Walcott commented on McClatchy's reporting during the period preceding the Iraq War: "Why, in a nutshell, was our reporting different from so much other reporting? One important reason was that we sought out the dissidents, and we listened to them, instead of serving as stenographers to high-ranking [Bush administration] officials and Iraqi exiles."
McClatchy journalists have also won nine Pulitzer prizes in their 159-year history, most recently in 2017 for an article on the Panama Papers. They were also finalists in 2015 for articles on government efforts to hide Bush-era CIA torture.
On August 4, 2013, McClatchy Newspapers, citing anonymous sources, reported on conversations between Ayman al-Zawahri, who succeeded Osama bin Laden as the head of Al Qaeda, and Nasser al-Wuhayshi, the head of the Yemen-based Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, discussing an alleged imminent terrorist attack. Two days previously, The New York Times had agreed to withhold the identities of the Al Qaeda leaders after US intelligence officials claimed the information could jeopardize their operations. Government analysts and officials interviewed by the Times said the impact of this disclosure caused more immediate damage to American counter-terrorism efforts than the thousands of classified documents disclosed by Edward Snowden due to a sharp drop in the terrorists' use of a major communications channel that the authorities were monitoring. Subsequently, officials have been searching for new ways to monitor communications among Al Qaeda's leaders and operatives.
Note: (*)—Indicates newspaper acquired in 2006 Knight Ridder purchase.
The Centre Daily Times is a daily newspaper located in State College, Pennsylvania in the United States. It is the hometown newspaper for State College and the Pennsylvania State University, one of the best-known and largest universities in the country, with more than 45,000 students attending the main campus.Fort Worth Star-Telegram
The Fort Worth Star-Telegram is a U.S. daily newspaper serving Fort Worth and Tarrant County, the western half of the North Texas area known as the Metroplex. It is owned by The McClatchy Company.Idaho Statesman
The Idaho Statesman is the daily newspaper of Boise, Idaho, in the western United States. It is owned by The McClatchy Company.J. D. McClatchy
J. D. "Sandy" McClatchy (August 12, 1945 – April 10, 2018) was an American poet and literary critic. He was editor of the Yale Review and president of The American Academy of Arts and Letters.KESP
KESP (970 AM) is an all-sports radio station in Modesto, California, United States. The station serves Modesto, Stockton, Lodi, and surrounding communities of the northern San Joaquin Valley. It is currently owned by Cumulus Media. Its studios are in Stockton, and its transmitter is located in Modesto.
KESP is the flagship station of the Modesto Nuts of the California League (baseball), and the flagship station of Pacific Tigers college basketball team. It is also a member of the Oakland Athletics, San Francisco 49ers, San Jose Sharks, Golden State Warriors, and California Golden Bears radio networks. Most of its daily programming, as the call letters imply, comes from ESPN Radio, until January 2, 2013, when KESP switched to CBS Sports Radio.
KESP gained its current call sign, and format, in the early 2000s. Other call signs used since it came on the air in 1951 were: KBOX (1951–1956), KBEE (1956–1983), KHYV (1983–1988), KOOK (1988–1992(?)/1996(?)), KBUL (1996–1998), and KANM (1998–2000). The station was owned by the McClatchy family, which also owned McClatchy Newspapers, publisher of the Modesto Bee. (The McClatchy Company has since sold the station to Citadel Broadcasting, which merged with Cumulus Media on September 16, 2011.)
In a sports-related note, Kevin McClatchy, a member of the publishing family, owned the Pittsburgh Pirates until the team was sold to Robert Nutting in 2007.Knight Ridder
Knight Ridder (from Dutch: ridder, knight) was an American media company, specializing in newspaper and Internet publishing. Until it was bought by McClatchy on June 27, 2006, it was the second-largest newspaper publisher in the United States, with 32 daily newspapers sold. Its headquarters were located in San Jose, California.Lexington Herald-Leader
The Lexington Herald-Leader is a newspaper owned by The McClatchy Company and based in the U.S. city of Lexington, Kentucky. According to the 1999 Editor & Publisher International Yearbook, the Herald-Leader's paid circulation is the second largest in the Commonwealth of Kentucky. The newspaper has won the 1986 Pulitzer Prize for Investigative Reporting, the 1992 Pulitzer Prize for Editorial Writing and the 2000 Pulitzer Prize for Editorial Cartooning. It had also been a finalist in six other Pulitzer awards in the 22-year period up until its sale in 2006, a record that was unsurpassed by any mid-sized newspaper in the United States during the same time frame.The publisher is Rufus Friday, and Peter Baniak is the editor.Sun Herald
The Sun Herald is a U.S. newspaper based in Biloxi, Mississippi, that serves readers along the Mississippi Gulf Coast. The paper's current headquarters is in the city of Gulfport. It is owned by The McClatchy Company, one of the largest newspaper publishers in the United States.
It was founded in 1884 as The Weekly Herald, based in Biloxi. It expanded its coverage into Gulfport in 1905, and by 1934 had changed its name to The Daily Herald, becoming an evening and Saturday newspaper. The State Record Company bought the paper from its longtime owners, the Wilkins family, in 1968. Around this time, it moved its Saturday edition to morning publication and added a Sunday edition. It added a morning companion paper, the South Mississippi Sun, in 1973. That edition ran until 1985, when the two papers were merged as the Sun Herald, a seven-day all-day paper. The evening edition was dropped in 1986, shortly before State Record merged with Knight Ridder.The Sun Herald offices and printing presses were squarely hit by Hurricane Katrina in August 2005, but the newspaper never missed an edition. Some of the staff evacuated in advance of the storm to Columbus, Georgia, where then-owner Knight Ridder owned the Ledger-Enquirer. From the Columbus paper's newsroom, The Sun Herald editors and designers, with the help of Knight Ridder journalists from across the country, produced daily editions of The Sun Herald for eleven days, until power could be restored to Biloxi and the newspaper could be produced at its plant there.
The Sun Herald was awarded the 2006 Pulitzer Prize for Public Service, along with The Times-Picayune of New Orleans, for coverage of Hurricane Katrina and its aftermath. It is the first Pulitzer for the newspaper. The same year, Knight Ridder was purchased by McClatchy.The Charlotte Observer
The Charlotte Observer is a newspaper serving Charlotte and its metro area. It has the largest circulation in North Carolina and South Carolina. It is owned by The McClatchy Company.The Fresno Bee
The Fresno Bee is a daily newspaper serving Fresno, California, and surrounding counties in that U.S. state's central San Joaquin Valley. It is owned by The McClatchy Company and ranks fourth in circulation among the company's newspapers.
The Fresno Bee was founded in 1922 by the McClatchy brothers Charles Kenny (C.K.) and Valentine Stuart (V.S.), sons of The Sacramento Bee's second editor James McClatchy. C.K.'s only son Carlos McClatchy became The Fresno Bee's first editor. The two Central Valley newspapers, closely linked by family ownership and editorial philosophy, formed the core of what later grew into The McClatchy Company. In 1926, the McClatchys purchased an older Fresno newspaper, The Republican. The Fresno Republican had been founded in 1876, by Dr. Chester A. Rowell and a group of investors that included inventor and entrepreneur Frank Dusy. In 1932, The Bee took over the subscription lists of The Fresno Republican and merged the newspapers.
The paper launched its website in 1996; in November 2005, the paper integrated its online operations into the paper's other departments. The Bee was following the example of The New York Times and other newspapers hoping to combine the creative strengths of the worlds of digital and print journalism.
Since 2017, the paper's relationship with their hometown representative Devin Nunes has deteriorated. Nunes took issue with several op-eds the paper had published on his handling of Russian interference in the 2016 elections. Nunes responded by airing TV ads attacking the paper and mailing constituents a 40-page glossy pamphlet solely focused on attacking the Bee's reputation.The Herald (Rock Hill)
The Herald is a daily morning newspaper published in Rock Hill, South Carolina, in the United States. Its coverage is York, Chester, and Lancaster counties. In 1990, the paper was bought by The McClatchy Company of Sacramento, California.The Kansas City Star
The Kansas City Star is a newspaper based in Kansas City, Missouri. Published since 1880, the paper is the recipient of eight Pulitzer Prizes. The Star is most notable for its influence on the career of President Harry Truman and as the newspaper where a young Ernest Hemingway honed his writing style. It was also central to government-mandated divestiture of radio and television outlets by newspaper concerns in the late 1950s.The Modesto Bee
The Modesto Bee is a California newspaper, founded in 1884 as the Daily Evening News and published continuously as a daily under a variety of names. Prior to its purchase by Charles K. McClatchy and McClatchy Newspapers in 1924, it merged in the same year with the Modesto News-Herald, adopting that name as part of a consolidation. In 1933 it changed its name to the Modesto Bee and News-Herald, and in 1975 abbreviated the name on its masthead to The Modesto Bee. Its current owner is the descendant firm, McClatchy Company, an American newspaper corporation.
The Modesto Bee has about 70 employees and is delivered throughout central California, reaching places such as Modesto, Turlock, Oakdale, Ceres, Patterson and Sonora. It currently serves 56,723 morning subscribers and 68,145 on Sundays.The Modesto Bee's website, www.modbee.com, attracts more than 1 million unique visitors every month.The News Tribune
The News Tribune is a daily newspaper in Tacoma, Washington, in the United States.The Sacramento Bee
The Sacramento Bee is a daily newspaper published in Sacramento, California, in the United States. Since its founding in 1857, The Bee has become the largest newspaper in Sacramento, the fifth largest newspaper in California, and the 27th largest paper in the U.S. It is distributed in the upper Sacramento Valley, with a total circulation area that spans about 12,000 square miles (31,000 km2): south to Stockton, California, north to the Oregon border, east to Reno, Nevada, and west to the San Francisco Bay Area.The Bee is the flagship of the nationwide McClatchy Company. Its "Scoopy Bee" mascot, created by Walt Disney in 1943, has been used by all three Bee newspapers (Sacramento, Modesto, and Fresno).The State (newspaper)
The State is an American daily newspaper published in Columbia, South Carolina. The newspaper is owned and distributed by The McClatchy Company in the Midlands region of the state. It is, by circulation, the second-largest newspaper in South Carolina. after The Post and Courier.
Its news staff was a Pulitzer Prize finalist in general news reporting for its Hurricane Hugo coverage in 1989. Its cartoonist, Robert Ariail, was a Pulitzer finalist in 1995 and 2000. Reporter Gina Smith and current projects editor broke the Mark Sanford scandal story on June 24, 2009 when she interviewed Sanford at Atlanta Hartsfield Airport as he returned from ArgentinaAccording to the newspaper's Web site, it has 440 full-time employees and another 31 who work part-time, not including an on-premises "McClatchy Customer Care Center for subscriber assistance." The State has a 260,000-square-foot (24,000 m2) building completed in 1988, three miles (4.8 km) south of downtown.In 2017, the McClatchy Company listed the State's Columbia, SC headquarters building for sale for $17,000,000.The Sun News
The Sun News is a daily newspaper published in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, in the United States. It serves the Grand Strand region of South Carolina with a daily circulation of 19,773 and a Sunday circulation of 26,798. It is owned by The McClatchy Company.
The Myrtle Beach News was founded as a weekly in 1935 by brothers-in-law C. L. Phillips and J. Clarence Macklen. They had recently started a printing business, and local merchants asked them to do a local newspaper. In 1961, it was sold to Mark Garner, publisher of Myrtle Beach's other newspaper, the Myrtle Beach Sun (started in 1950). Garner merged the two papers into The Sun News, and soon began publishing twice weekly. With the explosive growth that occurred in the next half century, as the Grand Strand became a major tourist and retirement area, the paper stepped up its publication schedule, becoming a full-fledged daily by 1977. It was eventually acquired by The State Record Company in 1973.Along with the rest of the State Record Company, it merged with the Knight Ridder newspaper chain in 1986. McClatchy became The Sun News’ parent company when it purchased Knight Ridder in June 2006.The Wichita Eagle
The Wichita Eagle is a daily newspaper published in Wichita, Kansas, United States. It is owned by The McClatchy Company and is the largest newspaper in Wichita and the surrounding area.Tri-City Herald
The Tri-City Herald is a daily newspaper based in Kennewick, Washington, in the United States. Owned by The McClatchy Company, the newspaper serves southeastern Washington, including the three communities of Kennewick, Pasco and Richland (Tri-Cities). It also serves the smaller cities of Benton City, Connell, Prosser and West Richland. The Tri-City Herald is the only major English-language newspaper in Washington east of Yakima and south of Spokane. The paper features local and national news, opinion columns, sports information, movie listings, comic strips, and other typical pieces of information.
The paper was founded in 1918 as the weekly Pasco Herald. In 1947, Glenn C. Lee and Robert Philip bought the paper, moved it to Kennewick and converted it into the area's first daily paper, coining the name 'Tri-Cities' as part of the paper's name. Lee and Philip sold the paper to McClatchy in 1979. After over 30 years as an afternoon paper, it became a morning paper in 1984. It added a Saturday edition in 1987.
In 1950, striking workers of the Herald launched a morning competitor, Columbia Basin News, in Pasco. From 1950 until the summer of 1963, the Tri-Cities was one of the smallest U.S. markets with two competing daily newspapers. Columbia Basin News printed its last issue in 1963.