Flotation will give Milestone cash to buy Courier group

The flotation of the Milestone Group on the Alternative Investment Market last week, which the company is claiming was a success, is to raise funds to complete the acquisition of The Courier Group, which publishes the South Oxfordshire Courier. The completion of the sale will mean that Milestone will own nine local publications, seven local radio licences and one local TV station. The company said it wanted to become a “significant player in local publishing” by using broadcasting and print outlets to promote each other. It launched the Basingstoke Observer in 2000, using the independent local radio station Kestrel FM as a springboard. Andrew Craig, chief executive of Milestone, said: “The flotation, which has been a great success, will be an important step in the group’s strategy of becoming a serious player in the local media marketplace. “We have already demonstrated the success of the benefits of a cross-media model in Basingstoke and we intend to address the numerous opportunities for our multi-platform offering throughout the UK.” It intends to use the Oxford station, Passion 107.9, local publications and the TV station SIX TV to promote each other.

by Mary Stevens

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