Tribune Co. Close to Exiting Bankruptcy

Creditors now searching for a new CEO

Nearly three years after filing for Chapter 11, the Chicago-based Tribune Co. is finally on the verge of exiting bankruptcy. According to the New York Post, a Delaware bankruptcy judge is expected to rule “within days” on a plan to give ownership of the company to its senior creditors, JPMorgan Chase, Angelo, Gordon & Co. and Oaktree Capital Management.

The Tribune Co., which owns numerous TV and radio stations as well as a newspaper division that publishes the Chicago Tribune and Los Angeles Times, could be facing a possible breakup as it comes under new ownership. Sources told the Post that creditor Angelo, Gordon & Co. is pushing for the company to abandon its $1 billion newspaper business entirely.

Meanwhile, the media corporation has begun the hunt for a new CEO. Sources told the Post that the company’s creditors have begun reaching out to possible candidates, including Scott Marden, president of information and media at McGraw Hill Co., former Dow Jones CEO Rich Zannino, and former head of ad sales at NBCU, Mike Pilot. Following former CEO Randy Michaels’ resignation last October over allegations of sexual misconduct, the company has been led by a four-member executive council, and most recently by council member and Los Angeles Times publisher Eddy Hartenstein.