Analysts and prospective buyers are preparing for horse trading to begin over the Tribune Co.’s newspapers now that the company, whose holdings include The Los Angeles Times and The Chicago Tribune along with other media assets, has emerged from bankruptcy protection.
Tribune, which completed its bankruptcy paperwork Monday, has not revealed the sale of any assets, but it is likely to do so in the next several months so it can streamline its business, said Reed Phillips, managing partner of DeSilva & Phillips, a media banking firm. The troubled state of the newspaper industry makes those assets most likely to be sold, he added. Less clear, however, is whether the company will sell them all at once or by region, like selling The Chicago Tribune with Chicago magazine.
“The company is too large and complex right now, coming out of bankruptcy,’’ Phillips said. ‘‘What’s needed is a more focused strategy.’’
Aaron Kushner, chief executive of Freedom Communications and publisher of The Orange County Register in California, confirmed on Monday that he was eager to buy Tribune’s newspapers. He would not say whether he had had any specific conversations with Tribune Co. executives.
He said that from what he had gleaned from bankruptcy court filings and public pension documents, it seemed likely that Tribune would sell its newspapers as a group.