Voice Media Group announced that it's sold the Weekly to the San Francisco Newspaper Company, which publishes both the Bay Guardian, San Francisco's other alternative weekly, and The Examiner.
From Voice Media Group:
The deal, effective immediately, means that The San Francisco Newspaper Company will assume operations for the paper beginning today. The sale of SF Weekly will allow Voice Media Group to focus on growth opportunities for mobile and online platforms and to develop core digital offerings in its other key markets...
Financial details of the deal will not be disclosed.
The SF Appeal is reporting the following:
According to at least one SF Weekly staffer, the San Francisco Weekly will experience multiple layoffs as a result of the publication's sale to the San Francisco Newspaper Company.
A deal involving the SF Newspaper Company and some other local asset had been rumored for a while. As the SF Appeal reported, initial speculation focused on the East Bay Express. Until the Express put an end to the rumor this way...
— East Bay Express (@EastBayExpress) December 21, 2012
The SF Newspaper Company bought the Examiner from Clarity Media in 2011. Co-owner Todd Vogt took on the role of publisher and president.
The Guardian and Weekly have been at each other's throats for years. In 2008, the Guardian won an antitrust suit against its rival, with a jury issuing a verdict that the Weekly had engaged in illegal predatory pricing with intent to harm the Guardian. The Guardian was awarded $21 million in that case; the two sides settled in 2011. During that period the Weekly published lots of material critical of both the verdict and the Guardian. Stuff like this:
The Guardian responded in kind (or maybe they started it, it's hard to remember now...) Here's one 2010 post by the publication's Tim Redmond gloatingly titled "SF Weekly owes us half its ad revenue."
There have been editorial differences, as well.
Anyway, that's all over now. At least in terms of who signs the paychecks.