€6 million sale of Tuam Herald not proceeding, confirm owners

Plans to sell the Tuam Herald to the Alpha Newspaper Group have halted after the group bought a minority share in the newspaper.

Alpha has secured a share of the paper for an undisclosed sum, with the Burke family retaining a majority stake in the company.

The Tuam Herald announced the deal in this week’s edition, stating that it will remain in local control.

“The sale of the company to the Alpha Newspaper Group, reported in December 2008, will not now take place. The Alpha Group has taken a minor shareholding in the company, but the majority shares are in the hands of the managing director David Burke and Mrs Mary Burke, widow of the late finance director Iain Burke, whose untimely death occurred on January 15 of this year.”

Mr Burke thanked staff for their “positive attitude” throughout the period. He said the primary objective was to retain all jobs currently held, and he was confident the company will continue in business for many years to come.

The Tuam Herald was founded in 1837, making it Galway’s oldest newspaper. The Burke family bought the paper in the 1930s and it has remained in the family since.

David and Iain Burke, who were cousins, agreed to sell the paper to Alpha late last year for in excess of €6 million. It is not known why the company, headed by John Taylor, has instead opted for a stake in the newspaper.

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