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Ex-WSJ Publisher, Steven Brill Sell Their Start-Up Digital Newspaper Service

R.R. Donnelly, the printing giant, acquires Journalism Online

Steven Brill and ex-Wall Street Journal publisher L. Gordon Crovitz have sold Journalism Online — the company they launched in 2009 to help newspapers monetize their online content — to R.R. Donnelly, the 150-year-old Chicago-based printing company.

Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed, but R.R. Donnelly certainly has the cash to make it. The company had more than $10 billion in revenue in 2010.

As part of the deal, WSJ owner News Corp. sold its minority stake in Journalism Online. News Corp. invested in the company last June.

The move comes a week after the New York Times announced that it would unveil its long-awaited paywall on March 28. Last week, Crovitz estimated the Times could generate $150 million a year in revenue from the metered model.

Brill is the founder of The American Lawyer magazine and Court TV.

The Jordan, Edmiston Group brokered the deal for Brill and Crovitz, who will continue to manage the company.