Date

Thu - 21.09.2017


Tribune Co.

Tribune Co. Chairman Sam Zell announced yesterday he will leave the company after it exits bankruptcy proceedings - the largest bankruptcy in the history of American media.

"I think when we're done with the bankruptcy process I will turn it over to whoever the creditors decide they want to run it, and wish them a lot of good luck," Zell told CNBC in an interview. He has even admitted that the situation at the Tribune is a "deal from hell;" however, he insists the company now is in "dramatically better shape" than when he took it private in 2007, and has a healthy cash flow for the next 12 months.

Image: Gawker

Last month the company began moving closer to exiting bankruptcy, as it filed a reorganisation plan backed by its leading creditors, including Goldman Sachs Loan Partners, Oaktree Capital Management and Marathon Asset Management.

Author

Leah McBride Mensching

Date

2010-11-16 22:38

The CEO of Chicago-based media company Tribune Co. will resign this week, sources told the Los Angeles Times. Randy Michaels will be replaced by a four-member office, which will include LA Times Publisher Eddy Hartenstein, President and Publisher of the Chicago Tribune Media Group Tony Hunter, Tribune's chief investment officer Nils Larsen, and chief restructuring officer Don Liebentritt.

News of Michaels' expected resignation came out after the Tribune board met Tuesday night, Variety reported. His resignation was ushered in after questionable behaviour was first reported earlier this month in a scathing article by The New York Times' David Carr, in which Michaels and other executives were accused of creating management and work culture that came to "resemble a frat house."

Image via the Washington Post. Randy Michaels in December 2007, shortly after he was appointed CEO of the Interactive and Broadcasting divisions of Tribune Co.

Author

Leah McBride Mensching

Date

2010-10-21 21:10

paidContent yesterday published this chart (left, click for larger view), which compares how long seven of the top U.S. publishers have spent in bankruptcy, as well as how their basic financial situations differ.

The publishers include MediaNews, Freedom Communications, Sun-Times, Journal Register, Philadelphia Newspapers, Star Tribune and Tribune.

Author

Leah McBride Mensching

Date

2010-10-19 17:40

As mediation talks broke down in the Tribune Co. bankruptcy case this week, the U.S. publisher is also being scrutinised following a report by The New York Times' David Carr on the inappropriate work culture ushered in as executives took their places under Sam Zell in 2008. Tribune management and work culture quickly came to "resemble a frat house, complete with poker parties, juke boxes and pervasive sex talk," Carr writes in the detailed article.

Zell took the company private in 2007 in an US$8.2 billion deal. Under the leadership of Zell and Randy Michaels, a former radio executive who was promoted to chief executive at the company in December 2009, it was initially thought the two would "breathe innovation and reinvention" into the company. Rather, the new leadership definitely changed the work culture, but through questionable management behaviour, sources told Carr.

Image: Wall Street Journal

Author

Savita Sauvin

Date

2010-10-07 22:33

The Chicago Tribune's business section unveiled a "refreshed and redesigned" look today, Editor & Publisher reported today. The redesigned business section emphasizes the coverage of consumer issues and personal finances.

Recently, the Tribune company formed a special committee with four independent board members to oversee its Chapter 11 plan as lenders withdrew from supporting a restructuring plan.

"From articles on personal technology and investments to health care, shopping and beyond, our reporting will help you navigate your lives," Michael Lev, the paper's associate managing editor/business, wrote in a note to readers, according to E&P.

Author

Savita Sauvin

Date

2010-09-14 22:16

Tribune Co.'s board of directors has formed a special committee with four independent board members to oversee its Chapter 11 plan as lenders withdrew from supporting a restructuring plan, Bloomberg reported.

Lawyers for the publisher told a Delaware bankruptcy judge weeks ago that JPMorgan Chase and distressed-debt specialist Angelo, Gordon & Co. had dropped out a settlement agreement, which would have left them among the company's new owners, Philly.com reported.

The four board members include Board Chairman Mark Shapiro, Jeffrey S. Berg, Maggie Wilderotter and Frank Wood, according to the Associated Press article posted on Google News.

Based on a court filing Tuesday, the committee will review and approve a bankruptcy plan and resolve legal claims against Tribune, including claims stemming from its leverage buyout.

Author

Erina Lin

Date

2010-09-01 18:13

An examiner appointed by the U.S. Bankruptcy Court has said the Tribune Co.'s 2007 US$8.2 billion buyout was "marred" by the "dishonesty and lack of candor" of senior managers at the time, the Chicago Tribune reported today.

In fact, the deal left it "too shaky to survive," after the company couldn't handle the massive debt load when the economy began crumbling, a Wall Street Journal article stated. The WSJ cites investigator Kenneth Klee's statement that it is "highly unlikely" the U.S. publisher was "rendered insolvent and without adequate capital" as a result of the deal, led by real estate mogul Sam Zell.

In a 700-page report filed with the bankruptcy court in Delaware, Klee concluded that the second part of the buyout is an example of "fraudulent conveyance," because the debt in the second half of the deal was so huge that it left the company unable to even pay its bills, the Tribune explained.

Despite the report's gloomy conclusions, the Tribune Co., which publishes flagship Chicago Tribune and the Los Angeles Times, among others, still expects to emerge from bankruptcy protection this year, The Associated Press reported late Tuesday afternoon.

Author

Leah McBride Mensching

Date

2010-07-27 23:54

Seeing a growing need for help in navigating social media and online advertising by small and mid-sized businesses, the Tribune Co. has created a consulting business that will also hopefully help the U.S. news publisher tap into another revenue stream, Crain's Chicago Business reported today.

435 Digital Services (named after the company's headquarters at 435 N. Michigan Ave. in Chicago) is beginning with 10 staffers, with plans to grow. Bill Adee, vice president of digital for the Chicago Tribune, has been put in charge, according to Editor & Publisher.

The consultancy will shift staffers from current ad sales into the new unit.

As companies search for more revenue streams, "it's worth wondering what the impact of shifting digital resources outside of supporting their companies' print and digital content will ultimately have," paidContent's David Kaplan wrote yesterday.

Gannett launched its own consultancy, GannettLocal, in Phoenix this spring. Its website promises customers it will:

Author

Leah McBride Mensching

Date

2010-07-07 23:44

The Tribune Company-owned Los Angeles Times will soon begin adding e-commerce links to selected stories and blog posts, as "both a reader service and a revenue opportunity for the company," editor Russ Stanton told staffers in a memo yesterday, LAObserved reported.

The e-commerce links will be highlighted in green with a double underline and no blue editorial link will be replaced with an e-commerce link. Each article or a post that includes an e-commerce green link will have a disclaimer at its foot stating: "Clicking on Green Links will take you to a third-party e-commerce site. These sites are not operated by the Los Angeles Times. The Times Editorial staff is not involved in any way with Green Links or with these third-party sites," Stanton stated in the memo, posted on LAObserved. "These post-publication links to sites such as Amazon and TicketNetwork will serve as both a reader service and a revenue opportunity for the company."
The ads will be placed by an e-commerce producer based at the Chicago Tribune, also owned by the Tribune Co., where the project has been in its testing phase for about six months. The e-commerce links will appear on health, image, food, travel, books, entertainment, sports sections and photo galleries. The green links will not appear in columns, news section articles and blogs, according to the memo on LAObserved.

Author

Savita Sauvin

Date

2010-04-28 22:14

In the latest dramatic episode in the trial of former Illinois governor Rod Blagojevich, a document released by the Federal government clears the Chicago Tribune from an alleged extortion attempt from the former U.S. governor's staff. The 91-page proffer, prepared by the office of the United States Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald, was unsealed upon the request of the Tribune, the Chicago Sun-Times and The Associated Press, the Sun Times notes.

The document lays out the plan the federal prosecutors will use against Blagojevich in the upcoming June corruption trial. In it unfolds the elaborate web of double-crossing orchestrated by John Harris, Blagojevich's chief of staff. According to Fitzgerald's report, Blagojevich believed that "the Tribune's negative coverage of him was fueling certain adversaries of his in the State legislature and...feeding the possibility of his impeachment."

Image: ABCNews.com

Author

Leah McBride Mensching

Date

2010-04-17 15:24

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