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Adds to Chain : Legal Times Acquired by British Firm

May 28, 1986|PAUL RICHTER | Times Staff Writer

NEW YORK — The American Lawyer newspaper Tuesday took another step Tuesday toward consolidation of a nationwide publishing empire with the acquisition of the Legal Times, a Washington-based rival, from publisher Harcourt Brace Jovanovich.

Steven Brill, American Lawyer's founder and publisher, said the acquisition, at an undisclosed price, brings to 10 the number of U.S. publications bought since September by American Lawyer Newspapers' major shareholder, London-based Associated Newspaper Holdings.

The U.S. chain includes five newspapers in Florida, the New Jersey Law Journal, the Connecticut Law Tribune and publications in Atlanta and Dallas.

Declines Comment

The purchase leaves only one nationwide rival, New York Law Publishing Co., which puts out the daily New York Law Journal and the weekly National Law Journal.

Brill declined to comment on a report that he also has made an offer for those publications.

James and Jerry Finkelstein, who own New York Law Publishing Co. and have been Brill's bitter rivals, could not be reached for comment.

American Lawyer, Legal Times and National Law Journal were all launched in the late 1970s, and each has sought to cover the inner workings of the national legal profession.

In an interview, however, Brill said Legal Times will now "focus more intensely on Washington--on its legal, regulatory and lobbying community."

He said he plans to double Legal Times' editorial staff of 12 and will not dismiss any current staff members.

Legal Times' current circulation includes 6,000 paid copies and another 20,000 unpaid.

The newspaper is currently profitable, Brill said.

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