Local group trying to buy The Tribune
September 12, 2008
A group of county investors, hoping to keep The Tribune locally owned, is making an attempt to purchase the struggling daily from its parent McClatchy Newspapers.
Both Publisher Chip Visci and McClatchy treasurer Elaine Lintecum declined comment.
The investment group advocates a focus on the community, said San Luis Obispo attorney James Duenow, who is working to broker a deal with McClatchy officials.
Just two weeks ago, Visci offered voluntary buyouts to a majority of The Tribune’ s employees. The slumping economy, declining advertising revenue, a collapsing real estate market, and even competition from online news sources have wounded McClatchy, which also owns an additional 29 daily papers.
In 2007, McClatchy’s stock plunged nearly 70 percent. This year, stock has fallen from $12.90 a share to $3.60 a share. In June, Visci announced plans to lay off five employees as part of McClatchy’s blueprint to lay off 10 percent of its workforce.
Sources tell UncoveredSLO the Tribune annually grosses about $30 million, and nets approximately $3.5 to $4.5 million.