Media mogul Rupert Murdoch may be looking to buy the Chicago Tribune and the Los Angeles Times as the parent company for the two newspapers attempts to exit from bankruptcy, according to a report.
Executives from Murdoch’s News Corp. are in “preliminary talks” with Tribune Co.’s debt holders, who are expected to become majority owners when the company emerges from bankruptcy, the Los Angeles Times reports.
Murdoch is the chairman and the chief executive of News Corp., which is the parent company of media properties such as the New York Post, Fox News, the Wall Street Journal and the Times of London.
The Wall Street Journal, too, reported this week that Murdoch is eyeing the acquisition of the Los Angeles Times.
News Corp. efforts to buy the two newspapers from Tribune Co. could become more complicated, as Federal Communications Commission rules prohibit owners from owning a newspaper televisions stations in the same market. News Corp. runs two stations in both Los Angeles and Chicago.
A Tribune Co. spokesman declined to comment on the Los Angeles Times report. Representatives from News Corp did not return calls for comment late Friday.
Other potential suitors interested in acquiring the Los Angeles Times are Austin Beutner, an ex-duty mayor of Los Angeles and a former venture capitalist; Aaron Kushner, who arranged the $400 million purchase of the Orange County Register and six other papers; and Doug Manchester, who bought the Union Tribune for $110 million.
Murdoch owned the Chicago Sun-Times from 1984 to 1986.