Sherman-based newspapers are expected to change hands very soon. CherryRoad Media has agreed to buy several Gannett-owned newspapers in Texas and Oklahoma.
The companies plan to finalize the deal Feb. 1. Terms of the sale were not disclosed publicly.
Seven business units are included in the sale, representing newspapers and associated businesses. In Texas, these are newspapers in Sherman, Waxahachie, Stephenville, Brownwood and Alice. In Oklahoma, the Ardmore and Shawnee newspapers will change hands.
CherryRoad CEO Jeremy Gulban said readers and advertisers won't notice any immediate changes.
"Everything will be seamless for the first month or two, and then we'll be working to bring the content back with more of a local flair to it, local content," he said. "And we'll also be looking to bring a lot of the advertising activity more local. We want to bring as much as possible back to the individual locations, but that's going to take a couple months to get that done."
CherryRoad Media has acquired from Gannett before. Previous sales include 20 newspapers in Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska and Iowa, four in Colorado and seven sites in Minnesota. The company picked up another seven newspapers from individual owners and has launched two "from scratch," Gulban said.
A Gannett spokeswoman said the company does not comment on transactions before they are final.
CherryRoad was already a well-established technology and IT services company before making its first foray into the media business in November 2020. Its vision is to help bridge the technological divide between small-town newspapers and their larger metropolitan counterparts.
"We want to be a true local source of news. But also as a technology company, we think we can bring additional technology to these smaller papers," Gulban said.
The two brand-new newspapers CherryRoad launched will serve communities that previously lost their only source of local news. The Rainy Lake Gazette in International Falls, Minnesota, replaced another paper that was shuttered by its owner.
And in Two Harbors, Minnesota, residents have gone two years without a local source of news. The new Lake County Press is expected to hit newsstands this week.
This article originally appeared on Oklahoman: Sherman among Gannett newspapers to be purchased by CherryRoad Media