Big media bites it

Mega newspaper corporation MediaNews files for bankruptcy

Newspaper industry folks and subscribers are waiting for the fallout from news that the parent company of MediaNews Group, owners of more than 150 newspapers, including the Chico Enterprise-Record and Paradise Post, has filed for bankruptcy protection.

Denver-based Affiliated Media Inc. filed the Chapter 11 bankruptcy last week. According to Affiliated, the move will, among other things, allow for financial restructuring and debt reduction. Primary lender Bank of America will swap $930 million in debt for an 80 percent stake in the company.

MNG has said the bankruptcy will have no impact on current operations, but insiders anticipate considerable future consolidation.

Meanwhile, according to The Associated Press, company Chairman William “Lean” Dean Singleton will retain his position and his hefty $634,000 annual salary, plus a bonus of up to $500,000, and an additional $360,000 through an agreement with The Denver Post Co.