Sound Publishing Inc., whose newspapers include the Covington and Maple Valley Reporter, has concluded the purchase of the Enumclaw Courier-Herald and its sister publication in Bonney Lake, Sound announced Wednesday.
The acquisition had been pending since a purchase agreement was announced in March.
The Courier-Herald newspapers previously were owned by a group made up of the estate of Ted Natt, John Natt, David Natt and publisher Bill Marcum. Marcum will remain in his current position.
Each edition of the Courier-Herald newspapers reaches approximately 31,000 homes and is distributed free to readers from Black Diamond to Bonney Lake.
Manfred Tempelmayr, president of Sound Publishing, said there are no immediate plans to change the way that Courier-Herald readers have been receiving their news. “It’s business as usual,” he said.
Sound Publishing, with headquarters in the Kitsap County city of Poulsbo, is a subsidiary of Black Press, which based in British Columbia. The parent organization owns more than 150 newspapers in the Canadian provinces of British Columbia and Alberta and in Washington, Hawaii and Ohio. The largest papers in the group are the Akron (Ohio) Beacon and the Honolulu Star-Bulletin, which are daily publications.
Sound Publishing has been making inroads through the Puget Sound region in recent years. The group purchased 10 publications, including the Covington and Maple Valley Reporter, in November 2006 from Horvitz Newspapers. In 2007, Sound launched or purchased newspapers in Issaquah-Sammamish, Kirkland and Sumner-Lake Tapps.
“The Enumclaw and Bonney Lake newspapers fit very nicely with what we’re doing,” said Tempelmayr. He termed the new association “a great marriage.”
David Natt echoed that sentiment, noting that his family has a long history with Washington newspapers.
“The newspaper industry is ever-evolving, and putting the Courier-Herald papers in Sound Publishing’s hands equates to a life insurance policy for the weekly editions,” he said.
The Reporter is part of a community newspaper group in King County that includes other weekly or twice-weekly publications in Kent, Renton, Auburn, Bellevue, Bothell-Kenmore, Mercer Island, Redmond and Snoqualmie, in addition Issaquah-Sammamish and Kirkland. Sound Publishing’s other newspapers in Washington are in Kitsap County, Pierce County and on Whidbey Island and the San Juan Islands.
In another development, Sound Publishing has named Josh O’Connor as vice president of operations in the east Puget Sound area. The newspapers he’ll ovesee include the Reporter and its sister publications in King County. He’ll be based in the office of the Bellevue Reporter.
O’Connor has been with Black Press for the past 10 years. Most recently, he was publisher of the Abbotsford (B.C.) News and Mission Record. The News is the one of the largest newspapers within the Black Press organization.
Sound Publishing is the largest publisher of community and suburban newspapers in Washington and is also one of the area’s largest commercial web printers, with printing facilities in Everett and Bainbridge Island. In addition to newspapers and business journals, the company owns the Little Nickel and Nickel Ads Classifieds throughout Washington and Oregon.