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Tribune Co. preparing to print in red ink, according to WSJ

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by DanOregon, Dec 7, 2008.

  1. MGoBlue

    MGoBlue Member

    Upon further review, this isn't as bad as it seems.
    Zel is just putting the bankers to the wall here.
    Trib has more than enough paper assets. What happened was that the Cubs didn't sell, and that hurts mid-2009's $500 million call. Zel just wanted to delay that $500 million payment six months, bankers said no, so he's trying to screw them by filing for bankruptcy.
  2. I find this assumption of Sam Zell's good faith...disturbing.
  3. poindexter

    poindexter Well-Known Member

    Sell the printing presses to Ben Bernanke.
  4. Lugnuts

    Lugnuts Well-Known Member

    More than enough assets for what? To sell? Unfortunately potential buyers aren't getting enough credit to buy those assets. And if you haven't noticed, the bidders aren't exactly lining up to buy newspapers these days.

    This article http://www.cnbc.com/id/28113659 makes it sound like Zell overplayed his hand waiting to sell the Cubs. Either that, or none of the 5 bidders could come up with the financing to buy them. Either way, it's very bad news.
  5. slappy4428

    slappy4428 Active Member

    Nice. So Sam can declare bankruptcy, wipe out all the employee holdings, emerge as the sole owner and the employees get nothing...
    What a prick.
  6. wicked

    wicked Well-Known Member

    Hang him by the balls.
  7. mocheeks10

    mocheeks10 Member

    As an aside, what will this mean for laid-off employees still expecting their severance? I say this because I just got mine last week (a mere four months after the fact). But I know of others who are still waiting to get theirs.
  8. SF_Express

    SF_Express Active Member

    Well, if he's not flat-out lying, this is a payroll expense, and he said those kinds of things will continue to be paid normally. So that should still happen.
  9. BTExpress

    BTExpress Well-Known Member

    Unless I am horribly mistaken, I think it needs to be noted that there are almost no "holdings" for employees to lose.

    Part of the reason why there is so much debt is that Zell paid Tribune employees $34/share for their Tribune stock when it took it private. Each employee now has that money invested in various market funds run by Hewitt Associates, and Zell cannot get his hands on it.

    Same with the pension plan (which ended in the late 80s but still applies to employees who joined the company before then). That money is in a separate fund and cannot be touched by Zell.

    I fear for my job, but I do not fear for my $250,000 401(k) or my $780/month pension.
  10. SF_Express

    SF_Express Active Member

    I have a small pension coming from them starting at retirement, and I couldn't for the life of me figure out how to see the projected payments on the somewhat revamped website yesterday so was slightly concerned, but it's probably not an issue by the sound of this.
  11. BTExpress

    BTExpress Well-Known Member

    Finding the pension was tricky for me on that site, too (mainly because it is NOT listed under the "Cash Balance/Pension" header).

    Click on "Retirement Planning", and you'll be on the part of the site where it says "Projected Income".

    There is a gray bar at the top with the heading "Project your Income", and then another gray bar with three arrows. One of those arrows points to "Pension Forms of Payment". Click on that.

    That's where it lists your monthly pension.
  12. NDub

    NDub Guest

    Holy crap. CBS Evening News' piece about this said 42,000 newspaper jobs have been cut in the past two years. I knew it was bad and getting worse, but 42K in 24 months? Holy crap.
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