INDIANAPOLIS – The head of Warren Buffett’s newspaper subsidiary said Wednesday the company has no new newspaper deals in the works despite its reported interest in possibly acquiring parts of Tribune Co.
BH Media Group president and CEO Terry Kroeger said during the annual conference of Associated Press Media Editors in Indianapolis that he wishes the company had some new newspaper acquisitions in the works, but it does not.
The Berkshire Hathaway subsidiary currently owns 30 daily newspapers and 48 weeklies.
Kroeger said Buffett said months ago he might be interesting in acquiring some newspapers owned by Chicago-based Tribune Co. In March, Buffett said he has no interest in Tribune’s big metropolitan papers, the Chicago Tribune and the Los Angeles Times.
Buffett has also said he’s not interested in purchasing any large newspapers, and his interest is only in smaller newspapers that are the sole source of local news in their communities.
“We’ve been clear on our position on that. Warren Buffett has been quoted on that. I don’t think there’s anything more to say,” Kroeger said following his address.
He said BH Media Group’s preferred newspaper size are those with circulations of between 30,000 and 100,000 that serve as regional daily newspapers.
“What we’re really good at right now is those size of papers,” Kroeger said. “We think our sweet spot is really between 30,000 and about 100,000 circulation.”
In February, Tribune Co. announced that it had hired investment banks JPMorgan Chase & Co. and Evercore Partners to help it sell its chain of newspapers.
That move came two months after the media conglomerate emerged from bankruptcy. The sale was prompted largely by a new ownership group that took over the company as part of its reorganization.