Monday, 8 December, 2008 9:44 PM
Tribune Company to Voluntarily
Restructure Debt Under Chapter 11
Cubs and Wrigley Field Not Part of Chapter 11 Filing; Monetization
Efforts to Continue
BY JASON RZUCIDLO / ©AMERICAJR.com
Los Angeles Times is owned by the Tribune Company.
-- Tribune Company today announced that it is voluntarily
restructuring its debt obligations under the protection of Chapter
11 of the U.S. Bankruptcy Code in the United States Bankruptcy Court
for the District of Delaware. The company will continue to operate
its media businesses during the restructuring, including publishing
its newspapers and running its television stations and interactive
properties without interruption, and has sufficient cash to do so.
Cubs franchise, including Wrigley Field, is not included in the
Chapter 11 filing. Efforts to monetize the Cubs and its related
assets will continue.
the last year, we have made significant progress internally on transitioning
Tribune into an entrepreneurial company that pursues innovation
and stronger ways of serving our customers," said Sam Zell,
chairman and CEO of Tribune. "Unfortunately, at the same time,
factors beyond our control have created a perfect storm -- a precipitous
decline in revenue and a tough economy coupled with a credit crisis
that makes it extremely difficult to support our debt.
believe that this restructuring will bring the level of our debt
in line with current economic realities, and will take pressure
off our operations, so we can continue to work toward our vision
of creating a sustainable, cutting-edge media company that is valued
by our readers, viewers, and advertisers, and plays a vital role
in the communities we serve. This restructuring focuses on our debt,
not on our operations."
filed today for Court approval of various, customary First-Day Motions,
including: maintaining employee payroll and health benefits; the
fulfillment of certain pre-filing obligations; the continuation
of the Tribune's cash management system; the ability to honor all
customer programs. The company anticipates its First-Day Motions
will be approved in the next few days.
company has sufficient cash to continue operations, to supplement
its cash availability in the event of even more significant declines
in its operating results, the company has negotiated an agreement
with Barclays to maintain post-filing its existing securitization
facility. Barclays has also agreed to provide a letter of credit
facility. The company expects to submit these agreements to the
Court for approval as part of its First Day Motions.
private last year, Tribune has re-paid approximately $1 billion
of its senior credit facility. During this time, the company has
been rewriting the business model for its media assets with the
goal of building a sustainable, innovative, competitive company
that provides relevant products for its customers and communities.
information on Tribune Company's Chapter 11 filing, please visit
Tribune.com or http://chapter11.epiqsystems.com/tribune,
or call 888-287-7568. The company will provide updates regarding
ongoing operations plans as they become available.
is America's largest employee-owned media company, operating businesses
in publishing, interactive and broadcasting. In publishing, Tribune's
leading daily newspapers include the Los Angeles Times, Chicago
Tribune, The Baltimore Sun, Sun-Sentinel (South Florida), Orlando
Sentinel, Hartford Courant, Morning Call and Daily Press. The Company's
broadcasting group operates 23 television stations, WGN America
on national cable, Chicago's WGN-AM and the Chicago Cubs baseball
team. Popular news and information websites complement Tribune's
print and broadcast properties and extend the Company's nationwide
audience. At Tribune we take what we do seriously and with a great
deal of pride. We also value the creative spirit and are nurturing
a corporate culture that doesn't take itself too seriously.