Post Company in talks to sell newspapers

NOTE:  This article first appeared in the Idaho Falls Post Register on July 30, 2015

By AUBREY WIEBER

The Snake River winds through the Magic Valley on March 21, 2015 in Hagerman, Idaho. Photo by Stephen Reiss

The Snake River winds through the Magic Valley on March 21, 2015 in Hagerman, Idaho.
Photo by Stephen Reiss

The Post Co. is negotiating a deal to sell the businesses and all its assets.
President Jerry Brady informed the employees of the possible sale by email Wednesday afternoon.

In the email, Brady said the move to sell was spurred by a need for additional resources that a larger company could provide. He felt selling the company, which publishes the Post Register, Jefferson Star, Shelley Pioneer and Challis Messenger, was the best option.

“I’m quite convinced it’s the right thing to do,” he said.

The Post Company recently approached several media companies about a possible purchase, but the parties couldn’t agree on a price.

That changed a few months ago when the Post Co. enlisted a newspaper broker who promptly found an interested buyer. Negotiating the sale started earlier this summer and talks progressed quickly.

As part of the tentative deal, the Post Co. has agreed not to name the interested company. Brady said he believes a final deal will be reached in weeks.

There is no indication that the sale will lead to significant changes to the Post Co., Brady said. Operations are expected to continue similar to how they have in the past.

After a final deal is reached, it will have to be approved by the board of directors and then put to a vote before the company’s share holders. Combined, Brady and his brother, Jack, own roughly two-thirds of the company. The remainder is owned by employees through an Employee Stock Ownership Plan.

The Post Company has been a family run business passed down through the Brady family since 1925. The Post Register was founded in 1880. Brady said he is coming to grips about its future.

“I am convinced I have nothing more to add to the welfare of the company,” he said.
While Brady wouldn’t name the interested party, he said they have been aggressive in their approach. He said they are looking at purchasing multiple outlets, but only during a certain window. When talks progressed, he felt the time was right.

“They are not going to be buying forever, and they are not going to be buying everybody,” Brady said.

While he couldn’t say for sure, Brady suspected little would change for the company and its readers. He said the buyers assured him they were impressed with how the paper has been operating.