FARGO — Forum Communications, a family-owned company operating multimedia properties in four states, has entered into an agreement to purchase the Rochester Post Bulletin from Small Newspaper Group.

The sale was announced Thursday, May 16, to the Post Bulletin staff and is expected to take effect June 1.

Small Newspaper Group President Len R. Small told the employees the new owners are “worthy custodians” of the company.

Forum Communications, based in Fargo, owns more than 50 publication titles, four ABC-affiliated television stations, commercial printing businesses, an interactive division, full-service content marketing, video production, radio, multiple news websites and Forum News Service, which distributes to more than 120 newspapers, including about 100 in Minnesota. The company operates properties in North Dakota, South Dakota, Minnesota and Wisconsin, including The Forum of Fargo-Moorhead.

“For over 100 years our family company has been producing quality journalism and we look forward to working alongside an award-winning team from the Post Bulletin,” said Bill Marcil Jr., who serves as president and CEO of Forum Communications. He is a fifth-generation publisher of The Forum, which the family purchased in 1917.

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The Post Bulletin has won the last two Vance trophies, the annual award given by the Minnesota Newspaper Association to participating daily newspapers with the most points from awards.

Terms of the transaction were not disclosed. It does not include the sale of the Post Bulletin’s downtown office or plant facility. After the sale is completed, the Post Bulletin is expected to be published in Red Wing, where Forum Communications operates a printing facility.

Terms of the transaction were not disclosed. It does not include the sale of the Post Bulletin’s downtown office or plant facility. After the sale is completed, the Post Bulletin is expected to be published in Red Wing, where Forum Communications operates a printing facility.

For now, the Post Bulletin will continue operating from its offices at 18 First Ave. SE in downtown Rochester, with many or all of the same journalists, salespeople and office staff members who were with the newspaper prior to the sale. The new owners indicated a wish to preserve many of the operations of the newspaper as they have been.

“My wife and I have known the Small family for many years and have great memories in our many newspaper meetings together,” Marcil said. “It’s fitting that we will continue with family ownership.”

The Post Bulletin is the largest Minnesota newspaper published in the afternoon with a daily circulation of 27,395 and Sunday circulation of 30,211. It has been owned by the Small family since 1977.

The newspaper covers 60 communities in seven counties in the southeastern portion of the state. The sale includes Rochester Magazine, 507 Magazine, SNG Research and AgriNews.

Dirks, Van Essen and Murray, a media merger-and-acquisition firm based in Santa Fe, N.M., represented Illinois-based Small Newspaper Group in the transaction.