Landmark Media Enterprises

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Landmark Media Enterprises, LLC
FounderSamuel L. Slover, Frank Batten
Headquarters150 Granby Street
Norfolk, Virginia 23510-2075
Key people
Charles Watkins, President and CEO
SubsidiariesDominion Enterprises
Landmark Community Newspapers

Landmark Media Enterprises, LLC (a spinoff of Landmark Communications, Inc.) is a privately held media company headquartered in Norfolk, Virginia specializing in newspaper publishing, Internet publishing and software.


Norfolk Newspapers was founded in 1905 as a holding company for the newspaper properties of Samuel L. Slover, including the Norfolk Landmark. They included papers which would eventually become today's Virginian-Pilot.

Frank Batten, Slover's nephew, took over the company in 1955, and changed its name to Norfolk-Portsmouth Newspapers Inc. in 1957 (reflecting the merger of the Norfolk Ledger-Dispatch and Portsmouth Star), then to Landmark Communications in 1967.[1] It became Landmark Media Enterprises in 2008. Landmark is controlled by the Batten family.


Landmark owns more than 50 community newspapers and special-interest publications in 11 states. That includes seven publications that cover college sports at Florida State University, University of Florida, Indiana University, University of Iowa (Voice of The Hawkeyes), University of Nebraska, University of Kentucky and University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill; and two daily newspapers: Citrus County Chronicle of Crystal River, Florida and The News-Enterprise of Elizabethtown, Kentucky.

Landmark owns Dominion Enterprises, which runs classified advertising websites for real estate, vehicles, travel, franchises and businesses for sale.[2] Dominion also provides software as a service products to real estate agents, auto dealers, and motorcycle dealers.

Landmark Community Newspapers properties[3]
Name U.S. state Type
Anderson News Kentucky Newspaper
Brunswick Beacon North Carolina Newspaper
Carolina Blue North Carolina Sports Publication
Carolina Gateway South Carolina Newspaper
Carrollton News-Democrat Kentucky Newspaper
Casey County News Kentucky Newspaper
Cedar Key Beacon Florida Newspaper
Central Kentucky Homes Kentucky Real Estate Magazine
Central Kentucky News-Journal Kentucky Newspaper
Chester News And Reporter South Carolina Newspaper
Chiefland Citizen Florida Newspaper
Citrus County Chronicle Florida Newspaper
Cynthiana Democrat Kentucky Newspaper
Declaration Virginia Newspaper
Gadsden County Times Florida Newspaper
Gator Bait Florida Sports Publication
Grant County News and Express Kentucky Newspaper
Henry County Local Kentucky Newspaper
Huskers Illustrated Nebraska Sports Publication
Inside Indiana Indiana Sports Publication
Lafollette Press Tennessee Newspaper
Las Vegas Optic New Mexico Newspaper
Lebanon Enterprise Kentucky Newspaper
Los Alamos Monitor New Mexico Newspaper
Morgan County News Tennessee Newspaper
Mt. Vernon Democrat Indiana Newspaper
Oldham Era Kentucky Newspaper
Opinion-Tribune Iowa Newspaper
Owenton News-Herald Kentucky Newspaper
Pageland Progressive-Journal South Carolina Newspaper
Perry County News Indiana Newspaper
Pioneer News Kentucky Newspaper
PLG-TV Kentucky Television station
Red Oak Express Iowa Newspaper
Riverland News Florida Newspaper
Roane County News Tennessee Newspaper
Sentinel-News Kentucky Newspaper
South Marion Citizen Florida Newspaper
Spencer County Journal-Democrat Indiana Newspaper
Spencer Magnet Kentucky Newspaper
Springfield Sun Kentucky Newspaper
Standard Publishing Company Kentucky Newspaper
Sumter County Times Florida Newspaper
The Bedford Bulletin Virginia Newspaper
The Cats' Pause Kentucky Sports Publication
The Gazette Virginia Newspaper
The Kentucky Standard Kentucky Newspaper
The Lancaster News South Carolina Newspaper
The Larue County Herald-News Kentucky Newspaper
The News-Enterprise Kentucky Newspaper
The Osceola Florida Sports Publication
The Record Kentucky Newspaper
The Wakulla News Florida Newspaper
Trimble Banner Kentucky Newspaper
Vandalia Leader-Union Illinois Newspaper
West Marion Messenger Florida Newspaper
Williston Pioneer Sun News Florida Newspaper

Former properties

One of Landmark Communications's holdings was TeleCable Corporation, a cable television service that began in a small Virginia town in the late 1950s. Landmark obtained franchise licenses to operate in about two dozen cities throughout the eastern half of the U.S., including Overland Park, Kansas; Plano & Arlington, Texas; Bloomington, Illinois; Racine, Wisconsin; Springfield, Missouri; Wytheville & Princeton, Virginia; Selma, Alabama, and other cities. TeleCable was a progressive company that inspired HBO 2, Disney 2, and Showtime 2 in Overland Park, Kansas. Prior to the 1980s, technology enabled subscribers to receive only 12 channels on a CATV system. TeleCable built two CATV systems in one when the franchise was granted in Overland Park in the late 1960s. Customers had A/B switches at their TVs so they could select either set of channels. This gave TeleCable of Overland Park twice as many channels (24) as other CATV companies. With advances in technology, TeleCable of Overland Park was able to double the number offered to 48 channels. In the early 1980s, there were very few satellite channels, and the pay cable channels typically signed off the air before midnight on weeknights (later on the weekends). Customers complained to TeleCable of Overland Park that they missed the 7 p.m. movie start due to late working hours, dinner, or children's activities. TeleCable management contacted HBO, Showtime, and The Disney Channel to ask to receive the Eastern Time Zone satellite feed of their programs for its Central Time Zone operation. TeleCable officials planned to charge customers who requested this expanded service an extra 50 cents per month. The movie channels dismissed the idea, believing no one would pay for that option. After several months, management had the full attention of the networks, as thousands were signing up. The sole benefit for customers was a one-hour earlier start for movies and other programs. But HBO and Showtime soon decided to create separate services for those channels. Disney followed suit a few years later.

Landmark's predecessor, Norfolk Newspapers, entered broadcasting in 1930, when it bought Virginia's oldest radio station, WTAR. It later added Virginia's second television station (and Hampton Roads' first), WTAR-TV (now WTKR) and an FM station (now WVKL). It acquired WFMY-TV in Greensboro as part of its purchase of the Greensboro, North Carolina newspapers in 1965. However, U.S. Federal Communications Commission (FCC) cross-ownership rules forced Landmark to sell off WFMY in 1976 and WTAR-TV in 1981. Under the rules then, a company could not own both a newspaper and a television station in the same market.

Landmark was an owner of KNTV in San Jose, California from 1978 to 1990. During its 12-year ownership of the station, KNTV (then affiliated with ABC and serving the Monterey / Salinas media market) was its only station that was not an affiliate of the CBS network. Landmark briefly owned WDBJ-TV in Roanoke, Virginia, but was forced to sell it immediately due to FCC restrictions. Landmark owned The Travel Channel from 1992 to 1996, when it was sold to Paxson Communications.

The company owned Chicago magazine from 1990 to 1995, when it was sold to Primedia. At one time, Landmark owned a minority share of the Washingtonian magazine, until its rights were traded to Eleanor Merrill, widow of its publisher Philip Merrill, in exchange for full ownership of the Annapolis Capital and five other Maryland newspapers.[4]

Landmark owned the hobby publisher Antique Trader Publications until its sale to Krause Publications in 1999.[5] In December 2001, Landmark announced it would close its subsidiary Church Impressions, based in Greenville, North Carolina, which published church directories, portraits, and other print and web media products.

Landmark once owned four career training schools that focus on health-related career education: Glendale Career College, Certified Careers Institute, Nevada Career Institute and Virginia Career Institute.

On September 19, 2007, it was announced that Continental Broadband (CB), a Landmark Communications (Landmark Media Enterprises) company, sold its South Florida business unit, WebUnited, to, the leading provider of data center (colocation) and managed network services in Florida.[6] On May 15, 2009, CB sold its Chicago business unit, ANET, to Cogent Communications, a global Internet service provider. On January 23, 2010, CB divested its Richmond Business Unit, NET Telcos, to Cavalier Telephone, a full-service provider of telecommunications solutions.

In early 2008, the Landmark confirmed that it was exploring the sale of the entire company.[7] Two separate investment banks, JPMorgan Chase and Lehman Brothers, were hired to help with the sale of The Weather Channel and the newspapers.

Landmark's best-known media outlet was the Weather Channel, based in Atlanta, Georgia. As part of its divestiture, the company announced in July 2008 the $3.5 billion sale of its Weather Channel properties, which included its share of The Weather Network and, plus Weather Services International and MétéoMédia, to a consortium comprising NBCUniversal and the private equity firms Blackstone Group and Bain Capital. Landmark and NBC Universal completed the sale on September 12, 2008.[8]

On July 14 of that year, it was announced that WTVF in Nashville, Tennessee would be sold to Bonten Media Group,[9] but that sale did not close. Landmark eventually sold the station to Journal Communications in 2012.[10][11]

In October 2008, the company suspended further sales of its properties, citing the ongoing credit crisis, with the exception of The Virginian-Pilot newspaper.[12]

Landmark sold the News & Record newspaper in Greensboro, North Carolina to Berkshire Hathaway on January 31, 2013. In May 2013, Landmark sold the Roanoke Times, the metropolitan newspaper serving Roanoke, Virginia, also to Berkshire Hathaway.[13]

Landmark sold its Maryland newspapers to The Baltimore Sun Media Group on May 1, 2014.[14]

CBS affiliate KLAS-TV, based in Las Vegas, Nevada, was acquired by Landmark in 1978 from a trust left by Howard Hughes upon his death. On November 21, 2014, Nexstar Broadcasting Group announced that it planned to purchase KLAS for $145 million.[15] The sale closed on February 13, 2015.

In 2016, Dominion Enterprises sold Dominion Marine Media (,, to funds advised by Apax Partners. The company is now Boats Group.

In 2017, Dominion Enterprises sold Dominion Web Solutions (,,, to Eurazeo and West Street Capital Partners VII, a fund managed by the Goldman Sachs Merchant Banking Division. The company is now called Trader Interactive.

On Sept. 12, 2017, CoStar Group agreed to purchase the ForRent apartment advertising division of Dominion Enterprises.

In May 2018, Landmark sold The Virginian-Pilot and its associated publications and websites to Tribune Publishing.

In October 2019, Landmark sold Expedient Data Centers to AMP Capital.

In November 2020, Landmark sold its seven+ remaining Colorado newspapers -- Brighton Standard Blade, Fort Lupton Press, Commerce City Sentinel Express, Metro Advertiser, Canyon Courier, Clear Creek Courant and 285 Hustler to Colorado Community Media.[16][17]

In April 2021, Landmark announced the sale of, a unit of its Dominion Enterprises subsidiary, to CoStar Group Inc. for $156 million. [18]

In May 2021, Landmark Community Newspapers was sold to Paxton Media Group.[19]

Television stations

Stations are alphabetically by state and city of license.

  • (**) - indicates a station that was built and signed-on by Landmark.
City of license / market Station Channel Years owned Current ownership status
San Jose–San Francisco–Oakland, CA KNTV 11 1978–1990 NBC owned-and-operated (O&O)
Las Vegas, NV KLAS-TV 8 1978–2014 CBS affiliate owned by Nexstar Media Group
Greensboro–Winston-Salem–High Point, NC WFMY-TV 2 1965–1976 CBS affiliate owned by Tegna Inc.
Nashville, TN WTVF 5 1994–2012 CBS affiliate owned by E. W. Scripps Company
Norfolk–Hampton, VA WTAR-TV ** 3 1950–1981 CBS affiliate WTKR, owned by E. W. Scripps Company
Roanoke–Lynchburg, VA WDBJ-TV 7 1969 CBS affiliate owned by Gray Television

Financial news

In 2008, Landmark announced that it would terminate its pension fund, which covered some of its retirees and current employees. The plan was fully funded. The pension beneficiaries were able to choose between a lump-sum distribution or an annuity provided by an insurance company.[citation needed]


  1. "Timeline of Norfolk-area newspapers". The Virginian-Pilot. January 4, 2008. Retrieved June 5, 2013.
  2. Fell, Jason (2008-06-16). "As Weather Channel Deal Nears Closure, Eyes Turn to Magazine Division". Retrieved 2009-09-23.
  3. "Properties". Landmark Community Newspapers. Retrieved July 17, 2020.
  4. Ahrens, Frank (2007-04-26). "Annapolis Newspaper Swapped for Washingtonian". The Washington Post. Retrieved 2010-05-07.
  5. "Antique Trader – About Us". Archived from the original on 2008-06-05. Retrieved 2008-07-06.
  6. Continental Broadband Continues Pursuit Of Its Business Plan With Strategic Move in South Florida Market Archived 2011-10-03 at the Wayback Machine
  7. Choyke, Bill; Walzer, Phil (2008-01-03). "Battens may sell The Roanoke Times' parent company". The Roanoke Times. Archived from the original on 2012-12-08. Retrieved 2008-01-03.
  8. Sutel, Seth (2008-07-06). "NBC Universal to buy The Weather Channel for $3.5B". Associated Press. Archived from the original on 2008-07-20. Retrieved 2008-07-08.
  9. "Bonten Buys WTVF-TV Nashville from Landmark". Broadcasting & Cable. 2008-07-14. Retrieved 2008-07-14.
  10. "Journal Communications to Purchase NewsChannel 5, WTVF TV, Nashville, Tennessee from Landmark Media" (Press release). Journal Communications. 2012-09-04. Retrieved 2012-09-04.
  11. "Journal Communications to Acquire Landmark's WTVF NewsChannel5". Broadcasting & Cable. 2012-09-04. Retrieved 2012-09-04.
  12. "Landmark suspends sale of assets, but not the Pilot". Virginian Pilot. 2008-08-30. Retrieved 2008-11-27.
  13. John Reid Blackwell (May 31, 2013). "Berkshire Hathaway buys The Roanoke Times". Richmond Times-Dispatch. Retrieved June 5, 2013.
  14. Baltimore Sun Media Group buys The Capital in Annapolis and the Carroll County Times
  15. "Nexstar Buying KLAS Las Vegas For $145M". TVNewsCheck. November 21, 2014. Retrieved November 21, 2014.
  16. The Colorado Independent
  17. "Dirks, van Essen & April | Press Releases | Colorado Community Media Acquires Seven Colorado Weekly Newspapers".
  18. The Virginian-Pilot
  19. "Paxton Media Group buying Landmark Community Newspapers". The Associated Press. 26 May 2021. Retrieved 2021-08-06.

External links