Chicago, IL, McLean, VA and San Jose, CA – Gannett Co., Inc. (NYSE: GCI), Knight Ridder, Inc. (NYSE: KRI) and Tribune Company (NYSE: TRB) today announced that they have jointly acquired CrossMedia Services, Inc., a leading provider of Web-based marketing solutions for national and local retailers. Terms of the agreement were not disclosed.
Through its award-winning SmartCircular and SmartCatalog services, CrossMedia Services transforms traditionally print-based retail promotions (such as sales circulars, catalogs, run-of-press ads, direct mail, etc.) into compelling search-based interactive formats. CrossMedia Services’ clients include many leading retailers.
“The Web has become a huge resource for consumers who search online and then buy offline in their favorite local stores,” said Brian Hand, CrossMedia Services chairman and chief executive officer. “Our online solutions complement the way consumers use the daily and Sunday newspapers to find ‘what’s on sale’ and other great values in their local markets.”
Today millions of consumers research products online and then make purchases offline. Known as cross-channel shoppers, this group often turns to online catalogs and flyers for product information, availability and cost. In 2003, cross-channel shoppers spent more than $130 billion offline on Internet-influenced purchases.* The average user of online catalogs and online flyers is 43 years old, and has an average household income of $61,878—an ideal target for retailers.**
“Gannett, Knight Ridder and Tribune newspapers are the preeminent retail media in the country,” said Hand. “We are excited to be part of a new venture that will bring retailers innovative Web-based marketing solutions to extend the reach and life of their print promotions.”
Gannett, Knight Ridder and Tribune are partners in other joint ventures to provide consumers access to great online classified products such as CareerBuilder.com, Cars.com and Apartments.com.
* “American Interactive Consumer Study,” The Dieringer Research Group, September 2003 **“Do Online Flyers and Catalogs Work?” Forrester Research, Inc., February 2004
CrossMedia Services, Inc. provides turnkey solutions for brick & mortar retailers, catalog retailers and industrial catalogers that enable the targeting of promotions to shoppers via the Internet. CrossMedia Services’ solutions transform printed promotions (such as sales circulars, catalogs, run-of-press ads, direct mail, etc.) into an interactive Web format, versioned on variables such as location or type of shopper. These solutions leverage the creative layout in print promotions, incorporate feature rich functionality and integrate with extensive analytics about shopper pre-purchase behavior. Investors in CrossMedia Services include Gabriel Venture Partners, River Cities Capital Funds and Trident Capital.
Gannett Co., Inc. is a leading international news and information company that publishes 101 daily newspapers in the USA, including USA TODAY, the nation’s largest-selling daily newspaper. The company also owns in excess of 500 non-daily publications in the USA and USA WEEKEND, a weekly newspaper magazine. Gannett subsidiary Newsquest is the United Kingdom’s second largest regional newspaper company. Newsquest publishes more than 300 titles, including 17 daily newspapers, and a network of prize-winning Web sites. Gannett also operates 22 television stations in the United States and is an Internet leader with sites sponsored by its TV stations and newspapers including USATODAY.com, one of the most popular news sites on the Web.
Knight Ridder (NYSE: KRI) is the nation’s second-largest newspaper publisher, with products in print and online. The company publishes 31 daily newspapers in 28 U.S. markets, with a readership of 8.7 million daily and 12.6 million Sunday. Knight Ridder also has investments in a variety of Internet and technology companies and two newsprint companies. The company’s Internet operation, Knight Ridder Digital, develops and manages the company’s online properties. It is the founder and operator of Real Cities (www.realcities.com), the largest national network of city and regional Web sites in more than 100 U.S. markets. Knight Ridder and Knight Ridder Digital are headquartered in San Jose, Calif.
TRIBUNE (NYSE: TRB) is one of the country’s premier media companies, operating businesses in broadcasting and publishing. It reaches more than 80 percent of U.S. households and is the only media organization with television stations, newspapers and websites in the nation’s top three markets. In publishing, Tribune operates 14 leading daily newspapers including the Los Angeles Times, Chicago Tribune, Newsday and Spanish-language Hoy, plus a wide range of targeted publications. The company’s broadcasting group operates 26 television stations; Superstation WGN on national cable; WGN-AM in Chicago; and the Chicago Cubs baseball team. Popular news and information websites complement Tribune’s print and broadcast properties and extend the company’s nationwide audience.