Tronc Trumbles After Gannett Terminates Acquisition

Ultimately, Tribune's, pardon, Tronc's management and shareholders turned out to be too greedy for their own good.

After Gannett had made two previous offers to acquire Tronc, the publisher of such newspapers as the Los Angeles Times, the Chicago Tribune and the Baltimore Sun, one in April for $12.25 a share and a second in May for $15 a share - both of which were rejected by Tronc’s board rejected both as too low and not in shareholders’ best interests - the two companies ultimately agreed on a $18.75 take out price.

Alas, it was not meant to be and as we reported last week citing a Bloomberg article, the banks that were supposed to provide the debt financing for the transaction, pulled out "over concerns about the health of the two companies’ businesses at that valuation."

So, after Gannett had been trying to buy Tronc for months to create a company with the scale to compete more aggressively with online news sites for national readers and advertisers, moments ago Gannett announced in a tersely worded press release that its was terminating discussions to acquire Tronc.

Gannett Co., Inc. Terminates Discussions to Acquire tronc, Inc.

MCLEAN, Va.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Gannett Co., Inc. (NYSE:GCI) (“Gannett” or the “Company”) today confirmed that the Company has been engaged in discussions with tronc, Inc. (NASDAQ:TRNC) (“tronc”) regarding a potential transaction and has determined not to pursue an acquisition of tronc.

Tronc's stock was down 30% in the premarket, down to just $8.50, far below Gannett's first bid for the company.

Disclosure: None.

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