The acquisition of the Celtic Media group of local newspapers by Independent News & Media (INM) has been given the green light by the Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (CCPC).
The deal still requires the imprimatur of the Minister for Communications, Denis Naughten, but it expected to get the all clear before Christmas.
Upon completion of the deal, INM will become the largest player in the regional newspaper market with 20 titles.
Celtic Media owns seven regional titles, including the Anglo Celt, the Meath Chronicle, the Offaly Independent, the Westmeath Examiner, the Westmeath Independent and Forum, a bi-weekly paper that is distributed in the commuter-belt areas of south Meath. The deal, however, does not include Celtic Media’s printing operations which remain separate.
For its part, INM owns 13 regional titles including the Kerryman, the Wexford People, the Drogheda Independent, the Wicklow People and the Bray People.