Several Minnesota Gannett papers to gain new ownership, including The St. James Plaindealer

Sarah Bunich
St. James Plaindealer

CherryRoad Media has announced the acquisition of several newspapers in Minnesota, including the St. James Plaindealer, all formerly owned by Gannett.

In addition to the Plaindealer, the company has agreed to purchase the Sleepy Eye Herald-Dispatch, the Redwood Falls Gazette, the Granite Falls Advocate-Tribune, the Montevideo American News, the Tri-County News in Cottonwood, and the Crookston Daily Times.

CherryRoad Media also has recently purchased several newspapers in Kansas, Nebraska, Missouri, Iowa, and Colorado from Gannett.

The purchase of these newspapers, all part of the USA Today Network, will be effective Jan. 1.

"We're really excited to be working with the high quality of staff already in place in these communities," said Jeremy Gulban, CEO of CherryRoad Media. "We want to bring together our tech skills and tools and put together great online news-sources and print newspapers for subscribers."

Gulban said a special agreement was in place with Gannett ownership to allow for a relatively seamless transition to new ownership for the newspapers in question. He said CherryRoad Media was willing to invest in local community newspapers because there was room for both print and digital resources in news coverage, especially areas that focused on local news.

"I don't think a newspaper is a newspaper unless we print a newspaper," Gulban said. "There are some who want a printed paper to hold in their hands, there are others who get their news online. We want to cut through the clutter and serve all with a better product."

In 2020 CherryRoad Media purchased the Cook County News-Herald in Grand Marais and earlier this year founded the Rainy Lake Gazette in International Falls. CherryRoad Media is a division of CherryRoad Technologies, which originated in 1983 with an office in Morris Plains, New Jersey. The company is now based in nearby Parsippany, New Jersey.

Gulban said his intent was to continue the legacy of the paper long into the future, fighting against economic forces with an infusion of creativity, energy, and resources to support local newspapers.

"We look forward to supporting the communities our papers serve in every way we can. There are many exciting initiatives on the horizon with this new endeavor, with much more to look forward to in the months ahead. Please continue to support your local newspapers and journalists. They serve to remind us of where we have been, as well as where we are headed."