EUGENE, Ore. — The daily newspaper in Oregon’s second-largest city was sold Thursday to GateHouse Media, one of the country’s largest publishers of local news.

The Register-Guard reported that GateHouse Media will officially take ownership March 1. The purchase price has not been disclosed.

The Baker family has owned and operated the newspaper since 1927, the year Alton Baker Sr. purchased The Eugene Guard. Three years later, he merged the Guard with the Eugene Register.

“We’ve come to the realization that in today’s business environment it’s increasingly difficult for a stand-alone, family-owned daily newspaper to compete successfully and continue to provide products the owners are proud to deliver,” said Tony Baker, chairman of the board for the Guard Publishing Co — parent company of The Register-Guard.

The Register-Guard has 240 full- and part-time employees, an average daily print circulation of 37,454 and a digital audience of more than 600,000 unique visitors a month.

In addition to the newspaper and its companion digital products, the deal includes the weekly Emerald Valley Shopper newspaper and a commercial printing operation.

“We are grateful to the Baker family for the trust they have placed in GateHouse to continue their legacy of providing strong community journalism,” said Jason Taylor, president, Western U.S. Division, GateHouse Media. “Eugene is a vibrant community that is ideal for the GateHouse portfolio.”

GateHouse Media publishes 630 community publications in 38 states, including 130 daily newspapers, and over 540 websites.


Information from: The Register-Guard, http://www.registerguard.com