Gannett Co., Inc. (NYSE: GCI) today announced that Paul Bascobert has been appointed President and Chief Executive Officer and a member of the Board of Directors, effective immediately.
Mr. Bascobert joins Gannett with more than two decades of management experience across media, marketing and technology. He most recently served as President of XO Group, where he was instrumental to the company’s transformation from a media business to a two-sided marketplace model. Previously, he served as President of Local Businesses at Yodle, a local internet marketing and advertising solutions provider for small businesses. Prior to that, he held leadership roles at multiple media companies, including Bloomberg LP, where he served as Chief Operating Officer of its Media Group and President of Bloomberg Businessweek, and Dow Jones & Co., where he served as Chief Marketing Officer across its consumer products, including The Wall Street Journal, Barron’s and MarketWatch.
J. Jeffry Louis, Chairman of the Gannett Board of Directors, said, “On behalf of the board, I am pleased to welcome Paul to Gannett at this important time for our company and industry. We are confident that his dynamic skillset and significant industry experience make him ideally suited to lead this company forward. Paul is a proven leader with a clear strategic vision and established record of successfully pivoting companies toward a marketplace model and driving financial and operational performance for multiple marketing solutions companies and well-established media brands. We look forward to benefiting from Paul’s experience and insights as we work together to extend Gannett’s leadership as a trusted marketing services partner to businesses, while delivering critical, trusted news to communities nationwide.”
“I am excited to join Gannett at such a pivotal time,” said Mr. Bascobert. “Gannett has a strong portfolio of brands, including the iconic USA TODAY, focused on delivering journalistic excellence and best-in-class digital marketing services. I look forward to working closely with the Gannett Board and management team, as well as our talented employees, to continue to drive digital growth, maintain our commitment to serving local communities and enhance value for our shareholders.”
Mr. Louis continued, “I also want to thank Barbara Wall for serving as interim COO during a critical period for the company. Her deep understanding of our business and operations from her more than three decades at Gannett will continue to be invaluable to ensure a seamless transition and continue the progress we have made in our ongoing digital transformation.”
In separate press releases issued today, Gannett reported second quarter 2019 financial results and announced that it has entered into a definitive merger agreement with New Media Investment Group Inc. (“New Media”) (NYSE: NEWM) under which New Media will acquire Gannett. Michael Reed, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of New Media, will be Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of the combined company and Mr. Bascobert will serve as Chief Executive Officer of the operating subsidiary.