First Posted: 12/22/2009
Clinton, Conn. Heartland Publications LLC, which operates 50 paid-circulation newspapers and numerous free or controlled distribution products in nine states, today announced the Court approval of all of its first day motions. Heartland earlier this week announced that it had reached agreement with the majority of its first-lien lenders on a financial restructuring and filed voluntary petitions with the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the District of Delaware to enter Chapter 11 protection.
We are pleased with the prompt approval of these motions that ensure that all of our publications will continue to operate with no changes to advertising or circulation agreements or customer programs, and no changes to employee pay or benefits, said Michael C. Bush, president and chief executive officer. We are on track to successfully complete this expedited financial restructuring by early spring, reducing the companys debt by more than half and creating a new capital structure, continued Bush
In addition to the continuation of customer and employee programs, the company also received court approval to maintain existing cash management systems, access cash collateral, and pay certain key vendors for prepetition expenses, among other items.
As previously announced, Heartland has sufficient funds and positive cash flow to pay its ongoing expenses for the foreseeable future. The company intends to file its pre-negotiated Plan of Reorganization in the next week; the plan calls for the full satisfaction of general unsecured claims.
From its headquarters in Clinton, Conn., the company operates 50 paid-circulation newspapers and numerous free or controlled distribution products in Georgia, Kentucky, North and South Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, Tennessee, Virginia and West Virginia. The company reaches more than 250,000 print subscribers each week and many others via interactive Web sites.