Knight Ridder Inc. will receive $262 million for selling the Detroit Free Press to Gannett Co., according to a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
Knight Ridder, the second-largest newspaper publisher in the country, and Gannett, the largest, announced the sale a week ago but did not disclose a price. On the same day, MediaNews Group Inc. also said it would assume ownership of the Detroit News from Gannett.
The Detroit newspapers say they will compete head-to-head each weekday and Saturday as morning dailies beginning in early 2006. The News, under its previous agreement, could not deliver morning papers to homes in metro Detroit.
The Free Press will alone publish a Sunday newspaper instead of the current joint paper. The two newspapers publish under a joint operating agreement, an arrangement that allows the two papers to share business functions but operate separate newsrooms.
In addition to the $262 million purchase price, Knight Ridder said it would get about $23 million in balance sheet adjustments in the Free Press deal, subject to final adjustments.
On the same day the Detroit deal was announced, Gannett and Knight Ridder also announced a swap of several other newspapers in Idaho, Washington state and Florida.