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White family’s Sun Media Group sells Rhode Island daily

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Sun Media Group has sold The Westerly (R.I.) Sun and its related publications and websites to Rhode Island Suburban Newspapers, also known as RISN Operations.

Dirks, Van Essen, Murray & April, a media merger and acquisition firm based in Santa Fe, New Mexico, represented Sun Media Group in the transaction. All employees will be retained by Rhode Island Suburban Newspapers.

“We at Rhode Island Suburban Newspapers are looking forward to growing our portfolio of local news publications with the addition of The Westerly Sun and The Mystic River Press,” said Jody Boucher, Group Publisher of Rhode Island Suburban Newspapers.

“The Sun is known for its trusted, community-focused journalism, which has distinguished it as one of the region’s most respected daily newspapers,” she added. “It also serves a market that is very attractive for us as we build our print and online media presence throughout southern New England.”

The 3,700-circulation daily Westerly Sun was founded in 1858.

Sun Media Group is a wholly owned subsidiary of the Record-Journal Publishing Company based in Meriden, Connecticut. Record-Journal Publishing Company acquired Sun Media Group in 1999 from the Utter family, fifth-generation owners of the operation. Record-Journal Publishing Company is owned by fourth and fifth-generation members of the White family.

Rhode Island Suburban Newspapers is led by Canadian newspaper executive Steven Malkowich. The new owners have newspaper assets throughout Canada and the United States. Nearby operations include The Kent County Daily Times, The Call of Woonsocket, The Times of Pawtucket and the recently acquired South County Independent.