Chandlers Expected to Bid on Tribune

By: E&P Staff

Due to tepid bids on the Tribune Co., the Chandler family is reportedly interested in buying the company with help of private equity firms.

The New York Times’ Andrew Ross Sorkin and Katherine Q. Seelye wrote today: “Now frustrated in the muted interest that the auction of Tribune has so far generated, the Chandlers are exploring the idea of leading a private equity consortium as a way to either create value in a leveraged buyout of the assets or to possibly start a bidding war.”

Last June, the Chandler Trusts, the largest Tribune shareholder, started an internal battle with board members over the direction of the company. The Chandlers had accused Tribune executives of mismanagement and suggested the board break up the company.

In September, Tribune announced it was exploring strategic options.

Several local business owners such as entertainment mogul David Geffen have expressed interest in buying Tribune papers in Baltimore, Hartford, Conn., and Los Angeles. But interest in the entire company has been weak. Only one newspaper company — Gannett — has reportedly kicked the tires at Tribune.

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