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Monday, Jun 5, 2023

L.A. Times Owner Sold

Chicago real estate magnate Sam Zell has won the bidding war to control the Tribune Co., owner of the Los Angeles Times and three Valley newspapers. Under the arrangement struck this weekend, Zell will pay $8.2 billion for the company, which will turn private and have an employee stock ownership plan. The deal calls for Zell to invest $325 in cash into the company in two phases and eventually assume the chairman position once the deal closes later this year. The deal works out to about $13 billion, including $5 billion of Tribune Co. debt. Zell’s bid beat an offer from Los Angeles real estate developer Eli Broad and supermarket chain owner Ron Burkle of $34 a share. Broad and Burkle have long been part of movement to bring the Los Angeles Times back under local ownership since the Tribune Co. bought the paper, which includes a chain of community publications including the Burbank Leader and Glendale News-Press, in 2000. (It acquired the La Canada Valley Sun in 2005.) The Tribune Co. also owns 23 television stations, including KTLA-TV in Los Angeles, radio outlets, numerous newspapers and the Chicago Cubs, which the company now says will be sold after the 2007 season.

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