Grand Junction newspaper up for sale due to hard times |

Grand Junction newspaper up for sale due to hard times

Paul Shockley
Grand Junction Correspondent
Glenwood Springs, CO Colorado

GRAND JUNCTION, Colorado ” Cox Enterprises Inc., parent company of the Grand Junction Daily Sentinel, is putting the local newspaper and other properties up for sale.

Daily Sentinel Publisher Alex Taylor said in a statement posted Wednesday on the newspaper’s website the move was made with the ownership’s best interests in mind.

“Still, it’s important for everyone to know that as long as Cox is in Grand Junction, and as long as I’m here, our employees, readers and business partners will be afforded the utmost respect and dignity,” Taylor said.

Taylor didn’t immediately return a phone call seeking comment.

Wednesday’s announcement came two weeks after the Daily Sentinel said it was scrapping plans to build a new facility near Grand Junction Regional Airport.

At the time, Taylor said the pullback was a reflection of tough economic conditions.

Cox Enterprises said in a new release Wednesday it also intends to sell the Austin (Texas) American-Statesman, its affiliated operations including, and all of Cox’s remaining stand-alone community newspapers in North Carolina and Texas.

Cox also intends to sell Valpak, the nation’s leader in cooperative direct mail advertising.

Cox Enterprises will retain ownership of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, The Palm Beach Post, Dayton Daily News and their affiliated publications.

“This decision was made as part of an ongoing strategic review of our portfolio and enables us to maintain our strong and stable financial performance by further paying down debt,” Jim Kennedy, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Cox Enterprises, said in the press release.

Kennedy added Cox is “confident” the publications to be sold will continue to operate.

Ed Otte, executive director of the Colorado Press Association, said the move is likely just as much a response to a worsening economy as it is pressure on the newspaper industry from non-traditional media.

“I guess you’d have to give credit to people saying we have to make a change now,” Otte said. “The newspaper industry is seeing dramatic transformation … probably the most dramatic in our history.

“Newspapers need to convert print advertisers to their electronic market.

“It’s too bad,” Otte said of the sale. “Cox has been a good parent company for the Sentinel and the Sentinel’s been a good paper.”

Taylor wrote on the paper’s website that Cox hopes to finalize the sale of the Daily Sentinel by early next year.

Cox Newspapers posted $1.4 billion in revenue last year, and Cox Communications listed revenue of $8.3 billion, according to its annual report, posted on

The Grand Junction Free Press is a five-day daily newspaper that competes against the Daily Sentinel, a seven-day publication. The Free Press is part of Colorado Mountain News Media, which owns a number of newspapers in western Colorado, including the Glenwood Springs Post Independent.

Steve Pope, interim publisher of the Free Press and general manager of Colorado Mountain News Media, declined to comment on Wednesday’s announcement.

Paul Shockley is a reporter for the Grand Junction Free Press.

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