U.S.-based Russian-language publisher buys Moscow Web daily

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MOSCOW--One of Russia's first daily Internet newspapers, Utro (the Morning), has been sold to U.S. publishing company Media Press Corp.

Media Press owns several American Russian-language publications, including the Russian language newspaper "Express", distributed mainly in New York City. Utro spokesman Maxim Shapiro says Media Press has agreed to buy a 75% stake, while Russian business news agency RosBusiness Consulting will retain a 25% interest.

Three-month-old Utro is one of the most comprehensive newspapers on the Russian Web and is updated daily with 30 new articles covering politics, the economy, culture, society and sports.

Mr. Shapiro says the new money will be invested in expanding Utro's staff and information resources. The newspaper plans to double its 15-person staff of reporters. A media campaign is also planned.

Mr. Shapiro says the newspaper currently does not publish ads because "we are too young to do it." It will start carrying ads "in a few months."

Copyright November 1999, Crain Communications Inc.

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