Berkshire Buys Tulsa World as Buffett Extends News Wager

Berkshire Hathaway Inc. (BRK/A) agreed to buy the Tulsa World newspaper from the Lorton family as billionaire Warren Buffett’s company extends its bet on print journalism.

The Oklahoma paper has a daily circulation of about 95,000 and 133,000 on Sundays, according to an e-mailed statement today from Omaha, Nebraska-based Berkshire.

Buffett, 82, has been expanding Berkshire’s media operations as he wagers that publications focused on local communities can withstand the shift of readers and advertisers to the Internet. The billionaire’s firm bought the publisher of his hometown paper, the Omaha World-Herald Co., in 2011, and acquired 63 daily and weekly newspapers from Media General Inc. for about $140 million last year.

“The newspaper business has become a difficult business model within a changing society and in particular for local family-owned newspapers,” Robert E. Lorton Jr., chairman of World Publishing Co., said in the statement. Berkshire “presents the best opportunity to continue a local paper that will serve this community, our friends and neighbors.”

The Lorton family has been affiliated with the Tulsa World for more than a century, according to the statement. The deal is expected to be completed next month according to the statement, which didn’t disclose terms.

To contact the reporter on this story: Noah Buhayar in New York at nbuhayar@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Dan Kraut at dkraut2@bloomberg.net

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