SanomaWSOY Group's newspaper division Sanoma Corporation has acquired the operating assets and publishing rights of Palvelulehti Itäväylä from Palvelulehti Itäväylä Oy. The transaction becomes effective on 1 January 2005.

Itäväylä will be part of the new Sanoma Kaupunkilehdet business unit (free sheets), which currently includes Uutislehti 100 and Kellokas papers. Their editions cover the central Uusimaa province and Hyvinkää in Finland.

"Itäväylä is an outstanding paper and an excellent addition to our chain of city papers which we intend to complement in the future. The paper strengthens our free sheet offerings in our core area Uusimaa", says Sanoma Corporation's President, Mikael Pentikäinen.

"With its editorial strength and local dimension, Itäväylä represents the values sought by the expansion of Sanoma Kaupunkilehdet. The appearance of the paper is professional and it is appreciated by readers and advertisers. This is good to basis to continue from", mentions Sanoma Kaupunkilehdet's President, Niko Ruokosuo.

Mika Laine, President of Palvelulehti Itäväylä cites the strong growth of the paper as one of the reasons for the transaction. "Following the acquisition, Itäväylä will have better possibilities to improve its market position. At the same time Itäväylä will continue to provide the same flexible service as to date", Laine says.

Established in 1984, Itäväylä appears once a week. It is distributed in 11 municipalities in the Porvoo and Eastern Uusimaa regions and its distribution circulation is 45,300 copies. The publication frequency of the paper will remain unchanged, and its editorial, marketing and distribution personnel will continue in the service of the new employer.

Sanoma is a part of SanomaWSOY Group.