Page last updated at 19:25 GMT, Monday, 8 December 2008

US publisher in bankruptcy move

Offices of the Chicago Tribune
Tribune was bought by Mr Zell in June of last year

US media group Tribune has filed for bankruptcy protection as it struggles with $13bn (8.7bn) of debt.

The owner of the Chicago Tribune and Los Angeles Times has been hit by the industry-wide slump in newspaper advertising revenues throughout 2008.

Tribune is owned by real estate billionaire Sam Zell, who borrowed heavily to buy the firm in June 2007.

Under US Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection law a firm can keep trading while it aims to sort out its finances.

Baseball team

Tribune is also the owner of the Chicago Cubs baseball team and the club's famous Wrigley Field stadium, although neither are included in the bankruptcy protection move.

We believe that this restructuring will bring the level of our debt in line with current economic realities
Tribune owner Sam Zell

It is continuing efforts to sell both.

Tribune said the firm's newspapers and TV stations would continue to operate as normal.

Analysts say that most of the debt was created by Mr Zell's purchase of the company.

While the next major interest payment is not said to be due until June 2009, Tribune is said to be at risk of missing certain financial targets set by the banks.

Tribune said its main creditors included JP Morgan Chase and Merrill Lynch.

"This restructuring focuses on our debt, not on our operations," said Mr Zell.

"We believe that this restructuring will bring the level of our debt in line with current economic realities, and will take pressure off our operations."

Tribune is America's third-largest newspaper group by circulation.

It also runs 23 television stations.



SEE ALSO
Shareholders back LA Times sale
21 Aug 07 |  Business
Property magnate to buy LA Times
02 Apr 07 |  Business

RELATED INTERNET LINKS
The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites


FEATURES, VIEWS, ANALYSIS
Has China's housing bubble burst?
How the world's oldest clove tree defied an empire
Why Royal Ballet principal Sergei Polunin quit

BBC navigation

BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.

Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific