The number of community newspapers around Central Ohio is going to be cut by roughly half.
The Dispatch Printing Co. Thursday confirmed plans to consolidate the staffs and publications of its long-owned ThisWeek Community Newspapers division with the Suburban News chain acquired in the deal for a Columbus-based media portfolio in September.
“We looked at all the properties we acquired, and the one real clear thing was that it didn’t make sense to have two community newspapers in every community,” said Phil Pikelny, Dispatch Printing’s chief marketing officer.
Both chains, each with 22 papers with only a few markets that didn’t overlap, have continued to operate separately since the purchase but, as of April, will be culled into a single staff producing 25 newspapers – one per community – from ThisWeek’s Lewis Center offices. The merging of the publications did result in job cuts, but Pikelny declined to say how many.