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Newsquest completes purchase of Isle of Wight County Press

NEWSQUEST's takeover of the Isle of Wight County Press was completed yesterday. The buyout by the regional newspaper group, which owns more than 200 titles in the UK, was agreed at a short extraordinary general meeting of the County Press Group in Chandlers Ford.

There was no opposition from shareholders to the takeover, with the vast majority agreeing to sell their shares.

The County Press has been in Island ownership for 133 years.

Henry Faure Walker, Newsquest's chief executive, has written to all County Press staff, to welcome them to the Newsquest group.

He said: "We have been really impressed by the performance of the County Press, and your unwavering ability to put out a great newspaper and deliver excellent advertising sales.

 "All this against a backdrop of the ongoing challenges in the wider media industry, as advertisers and readers increasingly turn to digital alternatives."

Mr Faure Walker added: “We look forward to working with the Isle of Wight County Press staff, operating as they do one of the country’s strongest local news brands, and supporting them in building a more sustainale future.”

Alan Marriott, County Press editor, said: "I look forward to working with the management of Newsquest to publish the sort of great papers the established team at Brannon House have always produced." 

Newsquest said a number of County Press board members would serve on an IWCP Local Advisory Board.  

The deal also saw Newsquest acquire digital agency Matrix Ltd and commercial printers Crossprint Ltd.

In a statement, Mr Faure Walker, said: "We want to facilitate a structure whereby they can benefit from the scale and resources that Newsquest can provide, whilst enabling them to carry on doing what they do best — namely providing a first class and unrivalled local editorial and advertising platform for the people of the Isle of Wight and its businesses."

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