Major US news publisher may file for bankruptcy

A MAJOR US newspaper publisher may file for bankruptcy this week to consolidate its debt of US$ 770 million.

An unnamed source quoted in the New York Times said Freedom Communications, owner of 33 daily newspapers, was considering filing for bankruptcy.

Freedom representatives have not confirmed the New York Times’ claim, but an article appearing in yesterday’s Orange County Register, owned by Freedom, said that bankruptcy was a possibility.

The publisher is in debt due to a loss in advertising revenue, and a buyout of disaffected family members who wanted to cash in their shares in the private company, according to the Orange County Register.

The majority of Freedom is owned by the Hoiles family, and Burl Osborne, Freedom’s interim chief executive, told the Orange County Register that they were making an effort for the Hoiles family to retain a minor interest in the company.

Despite their financial woes, Mr Osborne expected the Register to continue publishing without interruption.

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