Multifamily real estate firm Freeman Webb Co. has entered the publishing business by buying the Nashville Post, the Nashville Scene and Nfocus.
The Nashville Post made the announcement Friday after the deal with previous owner SouthComm, a holding company, closed. The sales price was not disclosed.
SouthComm put the publications up for sale after a period of layoffs and other cutbacks, The Tennessean said. A month ago New York-based
This purchase, first reported by the Nashville Post, comes a month CapStack Partners was negotiating to buy the publications.
Former mayoral candidate Bill Freeman and business partner Jimmy Webb own the real estate company that has more than 450 workers. The media acquisition will add 35 more. The publications’ leadership team, with Publisher Amy Mularski and CFO Todd Patton, will stay, as will the editors of the Post, Scene and Nfocus.
Freeman finished third in the 2015 election for Mayor of Nashville behind David Fox and eventual winner Megan Barry but decided not to run in May’s special election.
“Jimmy Webb and I are thrilled to purchase the Post, the Nashville Scene and Nfocus, which are all publications that we’ve thoroughly enjoyed reading over the years,” said Freeman. “It is important to us and to the Nashville community to maintain local ownership of these vital publications. We look forward to ensuring a steady future of excellent media coverage under our ownership.”
The new owners do not plan to overhaul the publications’ “editorial directions,” Webb said.
“The Post will continue to deliver business, political and sports news and commentary, while the Scene will still focus on the city’s government, music, food and arts, and Nfocus will provide social, lifestyle and philanthropic coverage,” Webb said.
SouthComm had owned the Post since late 2007 and acquired the Scene and Nfocus in September 2009. The Nashville-based holding company amassed a group of local publications across the Southeast and nearby regions but has sold off most of those titles. The majority of its holdings are niche business-to-business publications.
Freeman Webb Co. is the largest private owner/manager of apartments across Tennessee. It posted 2017 revenues of $172 million. It has expanded its portfolio to more than 16,000 apartment units and 1 million square feet of office space.