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MediaNews bankruptcy

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by 2muchcoffeeman, Jan 15, 2010.

  1. 2muchcoffeeman

    2muchcoffeeman Active Member

    MediaNews (rather, its holding company) will file a "prepackaged bankruptcy" which will reduce the company's debt load by close to $800M and cancel all of the company's current equity. The newspapers should be unaffected because only the holding company is filing for bankruptcy.

  2. MileHigh

    MileHigh Moderator Staff Member

    It's amazing it lasted without going into bankruptcy this long. This has been in the works for 3-4 years.
  3. DanOregon

    DanOregon Well-Known Member

    Really - I think this was Singleton's plan (or at minimum escape hatch) as early as 20 years ago. He saw where newspapers were going - figured he could leverage sales of struggling papers, starting small and slowly growing - and he put together an empire, generating cash flow out the wazoo, adding more papers and debt and increasing cash flow. All with other people's money.
    It's like they say - if I owe you $1,000 dollars it's my problem if I owe you $1 million dollars it's your problem. It's not like Singleton will be touched by this at all. He's never struck me as a guy who attached a lot of personal pride to his properties. They are all just vehicles for him to get where he wanted to go.
  4. Tucsondriver

    Tucsondriver Member

    Interesting take Dan. The "to big to fail" model works for banks, why not for media properties?
    Just occurred to me that a few years ago news like this would have lit up this message board like a Christmas tree. Wonder why it doesn't seem to attract much interest.
  5. MileHigh

    MileHigh Moderator Staff Member

    Exactly right. And from the looks of it, nope, he's not going to be touched by it. He still gets to run the company and control the board despite racking up more than $900 million in debt. And lots of talk of newspaper consolidation, so look for that in NoCal, SoCal, and perhaps Minnesota.
  6. WolvEagle

    WolvEagle Active Member

    I'm wondering if Detroit's going to be in that mix, too. The News is the lesser partner of the JOA with the Free Press. They already share the same building, presses and business operations.

    I sure hope not, though.
  7. budcrew08

    budcrew08 Active Member

    Not totally true. Apparently he's only going to own 20 percent between him and Jody Lodovic, if I read the story right.
  8. MileHigh

    MileHigh Moderator Staff Member

    But gets to control the majority of who is on the board. He's still running things.
  9. WriteThinking

    WriteThinking Well-Known Member

  10. MileHigh

    MileHigh Moderator Staff Member

    Kaye has a lot of insight, and I do believe a lot of what he wrote is probably dead-on accurate.
  11. derwood

    derwood Active Member

    It is highly doubtful that DOJ will allow a single entity to control all of print media in LA.
  12. DanOregon

    DanOregon Well-Known Member

    Derwood, have you listened to the radio lately? Mom and pops bailed out as soon the Fed allowed chains to load up on local market stations. In most markets you have two, maybe three radio companies that control the top 15-20 stations.
    All news companies have to say, and Singleton was able to swing the Merc deal with Hearst because of this, is say no and these papers will vanish. Jobs will vanish. You can't force competition if nobody is going to step up.
    The lawyers will say newspapers clearly don't have a monopoly on news, with the Web, TV, radio and dozens of multi-lingual specialty publications. It will happen.
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