George Norcross Now the Majority Owner of Inquirer, Daily News, Philly.com

He’s bought out one of his fellow owners.

George Norcross III

In a move that has deep ramifications for Philadelphia’s entire media ecosystem, George Norcross III has become the majority owner of the Inquirer, Daily News and philly.com.

Norcross is expected to announce his purchase of tech industry titan Kris Singh‘s shares in Philadelphia’s largest news organization later this afternoon. The move, which doubles Norcross’s holdings, figures to have massive implications for the ongoing battle for control of the papers between Norcross and Lewis Katz.


Prior to this transaction, Norcross (through the firm he leads, General American Holdings), Katz and Singh each owned 26.5 percent of the media company.


The transaction renders a buyout of Norcross's interests that much more unlikely and also figures to be a centerpiece in legal arguments in the pile of suits and counter-suits the two sides have already filed. Katz and Norcross are bound by a management agreement in which both men enjoy blocking rights on any major decision. But will that hold up over time now that Norcross owns twice as many shares? At the very least, this move signals that Norcross is getting further in — not out.

Norcross, the Democratic party boss of South Jersey, and Katz, a parking lot magnate, started butting heads shortly after they formed an ownership group to buy the city's papers and largest web site. The group they led, Interstate General Media (IGM), purchased the papers in the spring of 2012. But the pair reached what is apparently an unbridgeable impasse over the firing (and subsequent court-ordered reinstatement) of Inquirer editor Bill Marimow.

Norcross, who earned his riches in the insurance industry with Conner Strong & Buckelew, supported Marimow's firing. Katz, who most famously owned shares in the New Jersey Nets and the New Jersey Devils, has a longtime girlfriend who is one of the Inquirer's most accomplished reporters, Nancy Phillips, who considers Marimow her mentor.

The fight has since spawned a host of suits and counter-suits.

Katz remains allied with Philadelphia-area philanthropist, H.F. “Gerry” Lenfest, who together still own 42 percent of IGM.

Norcross and his allies, William Hankowsky, the CEO of Liberty Property Trust, and Joe Buckelew, from Norcross's insurance firm, now own 58 percent — the vast majority of which belongs to Norcross himself.

Follow @SteveVolk on Twitter.

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  • DTurner

    Does anyone really read the Inky much these days? I’ve found that Newsworks has provided better local coverage without the pay-walls of the Inky and the dross of Philly.com.

    • Aaron

      George don’t care about the paper, he wants to control the internet. This destroys people
      He can back link , hyper local link and have misleading stories told that are used to cyber bully and cyber harass his target and those he seeks vengeance on.

  • Lafollette

    A great thing for Lexie’s career.

    • Aaron

      Welcome to reckless irresponsible online political propoganda

  • CBS Philadelphia

    George Norcross will be named “Man of the Year”, on January 25 at WPHT’s Health and Wealth Fair at Cooper Hospital in Camden, moderated by Dr. Anthony Mazzarelli, Esquire, ER chief and WPHT personality, and WPHT financial advisor Steve Cordasco, a Cooper trustee (who told R.J. McKay, he never buys the Inquirer!)

    • WPHT 1210 CHEATS US

      Res-Q 1250 charges us old folks almost $80 a bottle for fish oil pills we can obtain at ShopRite on sale for $3.49. Every sponsor on WPHT cheats us!

      • Chris Stigall (honest)

        My sponsors are all H O N E S T, trust me

        • Dick Morris

          When SAVAGE NATION launches at 3pm, what time will I be on?

      • Jim Loftus, Sales Manager

        Contact ME, ASAP

      • Jane Yavis

        That may be true, but what other Talk Radio station is more dedicated to angry old white males more than 1210 and their Sponseos,,,,,The guy who grows hair, and gives you a new set of teeth, The Male Enhancer guys, the get drunk and take this pill to save your liver and mind Schtick. Don’t leave out the Sponsor that can earn you $72K/mo just like the President, the financial Genius that stutters his way to tax free investments and the doom of inflation for at least ten years now,,,and that British Gold Hawk. Oh, and don’t forget to take those vitamins before you venture over to that special little Gun Shop for Target Practice on Ladies Night.

        Maybe someday George Zimmerman can sign their Guns and show them h ow to be real ladies Men.

        • Stephanie

          Norcross needs male enhances.

      • Stephanie

        American hustle Norcross 1978

  • Aaron

    Norcross is going to use social media to ruin peoples lives. This tech company needs to be investigated. Social media laws are vague and Norcross is going to use the internet to destroy people. He has to be stopped. He’s dangerous. The technology company will be part of this dirty social medial sites

  • Aaron

    Call SEC and Get an internet investigator.

  • Aaron

    Beware of archived stories resurfacing on the internet to purposely destroy mob bosses, officials, people who wronged George and his family and friends.

  • Aaron

    Norcross will now control pa like he controls NJ. Norcross unethical

  • Keith

    This is scary to know this things owns the Philadelphia inquire

    http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=8cd__VbMFVM&desktop_uri=%2Fwatch%3Fv%3D8cd__VbMFVM

  • Jane Yavis

    Is anyone surprised,,,,,the so called Democratic Power Broker Republicans depend upon strikes again. Taxpayers will soon be bailing him out yet one more time.

  • Bill W.

    This is time to focus on the first of a series of realistic Five Year objectives. First? Go after all the rail commuters who currently “read” only their I-phones. Demonstrate how limited knowledge will limit their career objectives. Young college educated guys with suits and an Inquirer under their arm will eventually “destroy” each of them in morning meetings. Bob Hall; do you remember when I used actor Leslie Nielsen via TV “It’s not what your father or mother read.”? It is called “positioning” campaigns. We achieved our objectives. You know what happened. Good luck!
    It is just a suggestion. Bill W.

  • Nancy Phillips

    Norcross poisoned Katz’s wife

    • Stephanie

      Norcross killed a radio show host in Philadelphia.

  • ThirdWorldCitizen

    Just a comment to Steve Volk.. I read a story of yours where you state the “Norcross machine has suspended Democracy in large parts of New Jersey”. I agree completely with your observation, but one day you need to take a trip across the state and see what Republican Boss, George Gilmore has built in Ocean County. It’s like living in another country. We’ve been trying to get someone to do an expose on what goes on there, but to date, no one in the press has the “balls” to run a story. If you have an interest, I look forward to hearing from you.