The Yukon News has been bought by Black Press, a B.C.-based chain that owns more than 150 community newspapers in B.C., Alberta, and the United States.
Stephen Robertson, the News’ owner and publisher, announced the deal to employees yesterday. The paper will change hands as of Sept. 1.
“I have just reached a stage in my life where I want more time and not to be tied down day-to-day as I have been,” said Robertson in an interview Friday morning. He turned 50 this year.
He would not say how much the paper was sold for.
Black Press was the right fit for the paper and for the community, he said.
“I have known David Black and Rick O’Connor, who is the president, for a very long time, and I know that they’re real newspaper people. They believe in print, still, and they believe in media.”
O’Connor was in the Yukon this week to finalize the deal and meet the staff.
“We’re very good stewards of the legacy that the Robertsons have built here, especially Steve and his team, and we’re really looking forward to being involved in the Yukon territory,” he said.
Black Press does not have any major changes planned for the paper at this point, said O’Connor.
But they do hope to improve the esthetic. Within six months, the Yukon News should be available in full colour, he said.
Robertson said the deal with Black Press will help the Yukon News keep pace with the changing media environment.
“I was finding it more and more challenging to keep up with all the different technology and the social media and the web aspect of it all,” he said. “I started to realize how much more difficult it was as an independent little paper to try to keep current on all those things and do things as well as we want to do them here.”