USA Today publisher Gannett, headquartered in McLean, VA,  has held merger talks with Gatehouse Media, according to a report in the New York Post.

The NY Post’s post, citing a report in the Wall Street Journal, stated that the talks centered on both companies’ desire to “bulk up and trim costs.” Gannett, which owns 109 newspapers, has also held talks with Chicago Tribune owner Tribune Publishing and Miami Herald owner the McClatchy Company.

Gatehouse owns 156 daily papers, including the Austin-American Statesman and The Oklahoman, but most are in very small markets.

The Post’s report stated that the discussions come only two weeks after Gannett “beat back a hostile takeover bid by much smaller MNG Enterprises, also known as Digital First Media, owner of the Denver Post and the Boston Herald, which is backed by the cost-slashing Alden Global Capital.”

More here.

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