commercial appealVenerable newspaper company E.W. Scripps Co. is exiting the print business after 135 years, merging its 13 dailies with Journal Communications, publisher of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel and community papers in Wisconsin.

Scripps owns properties such as The Commercial Appeal (Memphis), Corpus Christi Caller-Times, Abilene Reporter-News, Knoxville Sentinel, Ventura County Star and The Gleaner (Henderson, KY).

The new E.W. Scripps will continue to be based in Cincinnati and consist of broadcast, radio, digital properties along with comparable offerings of Journal Communications.

It would rank as the No. 5 independent TV group with $800M in annual revenues and 4,000 employees.

The newly cast Journal Media Group will be in Milwaukee with $500M in yearly sales and 3,600 workers.

Scripps shareholders will own 69 percent of the TV operation and 59 percent of the newspaper company.

Scripps CEO Rich Boehne said of the deal, "We're creating an industry leading local TV company and a financially flexible newspaper company with the capacity and vision to help lead the evolution of their respective industries."

Tim Stautberg, senior VP-newspapers for Scripps, will become president/CEO of Journal Media Group.

The transaction will finalize next year.