Heartland Publications to Emerge From Bankruptcy April 30

By: E&P Staff

With its prepackaged reorganization plan approved by a federal judge, Heartland Publications plans to emerge from Chapter 11 bankruptcy on April 30.

Heartland filed for Chapter 11 protection last Dec. 21, reporting assets of $134.3 million and debt totaling $166.2 million. At the time of its filing, Heartland said it had defaulted on payments due on a total of $161 million in loans in the past year.

Under a reorganization plan already agreed by its first-lien lenders, led by GE Capital Corp., and second-lien lenders led by Silver Point Finance LLC, $70 million in first-lien debt will be exchanged for two term loans of $60 million and $10 million, plus an additional $2 million revolving credit facility. Current management will stay in place, Heartland said.

The plan also calls for the “full satisfaction of general unsecured claims.”

“We will soon complete this process and emerge with nearly half of our prior debt eliminated,” President and CEO Michael C. Bush said. “With this new, healthy balance sheet, we look forward to exploring growth opportunities once again in existing and new markets.”

Clinton, Conn.-based Heartland publishes 50 paid-circulation papers and numerous free-distribution products in nine states. Among its dailies are The Robesonian in Lumberton, N.C. and the Point Pleasant (W.Va.) Register.

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