City Hall Buys Argumenty i Fakty

City Hall has bought Argumenty i Fakty, one of Russia's best-selling weekly newspapers, a source familiar with the situation said Tuesday.

Argumenty i Fakty's chief editor, Nikolai Zyatkov, told Interfax that he does not expect the change in ownership to result in a significant change in the publication's politics or management structure.

"I think that it will probably be the other way round — further support of this profitable business, otherwise what would be the sense in buying it," Zyatkov said.

The source said that the deal went through last week.

The mayor's office is willing to put forward 150 million rubles ($4.1 million) for the newspaper's development, Vedomosti reported. 

City Hall's interest in buying Argumenty i Fakty was first reported in July 2013. At the time, the value of the deal was thought to be worth $75-120 million.

The newspaper, which was founded in 1978 and has a circulation of 2.2 million copies, was bought from PromSvyazKapital holding company — controlled by brothers Dmitry and Alexei Ananyev.

Moscow authorities already own a number of media outlets, including Moskva 24 television channel and Moscow FM radio station.

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