The Loudoun County weekly newspaper Leesburg Today announced Tuesday that its parent company, American Community Newspapers LLC, had sold its Northern Virginia publications to a Texas-based media acquisitions company. The newspaper will continue to publish.
ACN first announced plans to sell its Virginia-based publications — including Leesburg Today, Loudoun Magazine, Middleburg Life and several others — in October. The company also put its media holdings in Texas, Minnesota and Ohio up for sale, according to a statement from Leesburg Today.
HPR Hemlock LLC, which purchased ACN’s Northern Virginia division for an undisclosed price this week, said in the statement that the company’s philosophy “centers on finding strong local news providers with management experience in their local markets with local and regional readers and advertisers.”
Longtime media executive Richard L. Connor, who will be assisting with the transition, emphasized the importance of maintaining consistency following the acquisition.
“These community weekly newspapers and their targeted specialty publications have been serving Northern Virginia for a long, long time and HPR Hemlock will be relying on the people who have built these businesses to continue to run them as if they own them,” he said in the announcement.
Norman Styler, publisher and editor of Leesburg Today, said in the statement that the sale will now allow the newspaper staff “to move ahead with growth plans that have been sidelined during the [acquisition] process.”
It was the most recent development in a local media landscape that has weathered many changes in recent years. In June 2010, the Loudoun Independent and the Loudoun Times-Mirror announced that the two publications would merge, after the Loudoun Independent declared bankruptcy in 2008. ACN also filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in 2009, and was purchased that same year for $32 million by American Community Newspapers II.