A PYMNTS Company

Canada’s Largest Newspapers Talk Merger

 |  July 2, 2023

The parent companies of the two largest newspaper chains in the country are currently in merger discussions. They aim to reduce debt and create a stronger media business that can effectively compete with global digital platforms.

Postmedia Network and Nordstar Capital are discussing the possibility of merging their operations. This potential union coincides with the ongoing dispute between social media giants, like Meta Platforms Inc. and Alphabet Inc., and the Canadian government over internet regulations. These platforms are threatening to restrict access to Canadian news on their sites.

The new entity would have shared operating control between the two companies, with existing Postmedia shareholders owning 56% of the economic interest and Nordstar, the owner of approximately 70 titles, holding a 44% stake. Additionally, Nordstar, controlled by entrepreneur Jordan Bitove, would maintain a 65% stake in the Toronto Star, which would be established as a separate company.

Read more: Canada’s Antitrust Regulator Pushes Merger Reform

Mr. Bitove will be chairman of the combined companies. Andrew MacLeod, CEO of Postmedia, will be the CEO. Mr. Bitove will still be the publisher of the Toronto Star. Postmedia owns several newspapers including the Vancouver Sun and Province, Edmonton Journal, Calgary Herald, and Montreal Gazette. Nordstar’s portfolio includes the Hamilton Spectator and the Waterloo Region Record.

“The viability of the newspaper industry in Canada is at an extreme risk, especially in the small towns and communities that are important to this nation,” said Mr. Bitove in a release. “By pooling resources and working collaboratively, we can ensure that more Canadians have access to trusted journalism and quality reporting.”