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'Chronicle-Express' will close Sept. 14 ADVERTISEMENT

'Chronicle-Express' announces it will stop publishing Sept. 14

PENN YAN--Gannett Co., Inc., the publicly traded company which owns hundreds of newspapers across the country, including area weekly and daily newspapers, The Chronicle-Express, The Leader, Star-Gazette and Democrat and Chronicle, reported their second quarter financials, Thursday, Aug. 4. In addition to announcing a quarterly loss of $53.7 million, a press release to investors signaled significant cost reductions were on the way.
While the company did not say which properties or employees would be cut, the Chronicle's front page on Wednesday, Aug. 10 announced the closure of the 198-year-old publication. The final edition is reported in the story as Wednesday, Sept. 14.
A free shopper, The Chronicle-Adviser, which for decades was a companion to the Penn Yan newspaper, had previously stopped printing prior to this announcement.
In regards to the financial disclosures last week, Gannett Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Michael Reed said, "We are not satisfied with our overall performance in the second quarter and have quickly responded to this rapidly deteriorating economic environment by implementing a significant cost reduction program that we believe will better position the company to realize its long-term growth goals, with a lower and more variable cost structure. The changes and reductions to our cost structure are focused primarily on our legacy print business."
The newspaper company GateHouse bought Gannett in 2019 but chose to use the Gannett name going forward. Revenue made through the sale of real estate and cost savings with reduced staff have been a hallmark of the recent company decisions. The Penn Yan office was greatly reduced in 2020, with the elimination of an editor, publisher and sales staff. Additional reductions reflect a masthead that now only has a staff writer. A push toward digital development has also replaced the company's focus on printed products.
While Reed said digital paid subscribers have grown 35 percent year-over-year, he cautioned, "This current downturn is pulling forward print revenue losses anticipated in future periods, and more quickly requiring changes to our operations and cost structure which we believe will benefit us over time."

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