Tribune exits bankruptcy after four years

The Chicago Tribune building, in Chicago.
The Chicago Tribune building, in Chicago. AP File Photo

New York - Tribune Co., owner of the Hartford Courant, Chicago Tribune, Los Angeles Times and five other daily papers, has emerged from bankruptcy, four years after a doomed leveraged buyout by billionaire Sam Zell led to Chapter 11 proceedings.

Distributions to creditors have been initiated, the Chicago-based company said Monday in a statement. As part of its exit from bankruptcy, Tribune Co. also closed on a $1.1 billion term loan and a $300 million revolving credit line. The company is now in a position to begin a wide-ranging sale of assets including stakes in the Food Network and CareerBuilder Inc., its newspapers and real estate, Lance Vitanza, managing, director, CRT Capital Group, said.

In addition to the newspapers, Tribune Co. owns 23 television stations and stakes in more than 50 websites. The company has been seeking an adviser for a possible sale of at least some of its newspapers, people familiar with the situation said earlier this month. Rupert Murdoch, chairman and CEO of News Corp., plans to take a close look at Tribune Co.'s newspaper assets.

-Bloomberg News

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