TCH buys Roscommon Herald

IRISH Examiner owners Thomas Crosbie Holdings continued to pursue its aggressive acquisition strategy yesterday with the purchase of the Nerney family-owned Roscommon Herald.

The move makes TCH the single largest player in the Irish regional newspaper market with 11 separate titles.

Neither party would disclose a sale price citing confidentiality agreements, but media reports would indicate that TCH would have to pay close to €7 million to acquire the highly profitable company.

The Roscommon Herald which employs 20 people and has a circulation of 10,000 a week is believed to generate gross revenues of close to €2m a year, returning profits of close to €500,000, according to a recent report in the Sunday Times.

The company's managing director Brian Nerney is to remain at the helm. Mr Nerney, 38, said he was delighted to complete the sale of the Herald to an Irish family company with such an excellent reputation.

Mr Nerney, confirming no jobs would be lost as a result of the sale, said becoming part of the TCH group offers excellent development opportunities for both the title and staff.

TCH managing director Anthony Dinan said he was delighted with the group's 11th acquisition in nine years. Mr Dinan said he is looking forward to working with Mr Nerney and his team and to the further development and growth of this successful newspaper.

The newspaper is printed by the Meath Chronicle and it is understood this arrangement will continue for the foreseeable future.

Thomas Crosbie Holdings Limited now owns 14 newspapers: the Irish Examiner, the Evening Echo, the Waterford News & Star, the Western People, the Sligo Weekender, The Kingdom, the Newry Democrat, the Down Democrat, the Nationalist and Leinster Times, the Kildare Nationalist, the Laois Nationalist, the Roscommon Herald, the Sunday Business Post, and the Irish Post.

TCH has shares in three radio stations, Red FM, Mid West Radio and North West Radio, and has a vibrant electronic company Thomas Crosbie Media, which also owns and Recruit

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