Saturday, February 13, 2016 – 10:00 a.m.
Bankrupt Freedom Communication, parent company of The Orange County Register and The Press-Enterprise, has already been ran into the ground by former CEO Aaron Kushner.
Now comes two bids for the assets of the ailing company. The first bidder is from Tribune Publishing, and the second from Digital First Media (DFM).
Tribune owns the Los Angeles Times, while DFM owns the Los Angeles News Group, which operates among others, The Sun, Inland Valley Daily Bulletin and Redlands Daily Facts newspapers.
All three publications are razor thin, filled with advertising and lack any real local content.
The Register and The Press-Enterprise, to a much lesser extent, are pretty good newspapers. Meaning the Register still possesses the ability to perform serious ‘investigative” reporting, and publish stories bigger than what can fit on a cocktail napkin.
Now DFM wants to acquire the publications and likely reduce them to what amounts to meaningless cat box liners.
The same DFM that unsuccessfully placed itself up for sale last spring.
Back in 2015, DFM had wanted to sell most of its assets, including flagship Denver Post, for around $600 million.
DFM only received interest from two investment firms, with interest in a purchase price around the $400 million range.
DFM immediately went off the selling block.
Having two more Southern California news publications, with the potential of being owned by DFM is a tragedy for the public.
Hopefully Tribune Publishing, or an internal group consisting of Freedom management, prevails here.