Lee Enterprises files for bankruptcy

Lee Enterprises Inc., the owner of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch and 47 other daily U.S. newspapers, including the Wisconsin State Journal and the Racine Journal Times, filed for bankruptcy protection from creditors today and plans to borrow as much as $40 million to continue operations.
In Chapter 11 documents filed today in Wilmington, Dela., Lee listed $1.2 billion in assets and $1.3 billion in debts.
The Davenport, Iowa-based company acquired Pulitzer Inc. in 2005 to gain control of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.
In addition to the 48 daily newspapers, Lee has 300 specialty publications and interests in four other dailies.
Carl Schmidt, Lee’s chief financial officer, said in a court filing that the company “has significant long-term debt.”
The company is asking a judge to approve its reorganization plan, which is designed to pay all creditors in full, at a hearing in late January.

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