It slashed jobs, reorganized, made all sorts of changes to battle declining revenues and a tight market, but the Tribune Co. just hasn’t been able to deal with its $13 billion in debt. With the heavy debt load and only $7.6 billion in assets, the media conglomerate today filed for bankruptcy protection.
Tribune owns 12 newspapers including the Los Angeles Times and the Chicago Tribune, 23 TV stations, including KTLA-5 in L.A., and the Chicago Cubs. The company has been unsuccessful in selling off some of its assets – its baseball team, Wrigley Field and the company’s share in a regional cable sports network. According to the NYT, the sale could Tribune more than $1 billion.
In its court filing Tribune lists JPMorgan Chase, Merrill Lynch and Deutsche Bank as its top creditors. The AP reports several media companies are also on that list: Warner Bros. Television is owed $23.7 million, Twentieth Television Inc. $8.1 million, Buena Vista Entertainment Inc. $6.2 million and NBC Universal Domestic Television $4.9 million.