*Two key questions on Tribune sale

Blah, blah, blah, blah.... Here it is, just six hours after the announcement, and already I'm in overdoze mode. Oh yeah, I realize there are hundreds of key questions if you're a Tribune employee - starting with that most important, "What does this mean for me. Sorry, but it's going to be many months - perhaps even a year or so - before you'll be able to take a stab at that one. I realize that's a long time to wait, so for now it might be worth engaging two more basic questions:

1)Who is advising Zell? Sure, he's an incredibly smart guy and all that, but his business is real estate, not media. He must be calling on newspaper/television folks he can trust to get a sense of what these worlds are like - and how he can make money in this new venture. Getting their names might be useful information to have.

2)What is the status of Tribune CEO Dennis FitzSimons? The Tribune press release artfully notes that he'll remain on the board, but will he be running the show? There's really no indication, one way or another. Zell is not about to make a change near term (the deal won't even close until the end of the year), but once the dust settles, might Zell consider bringing on a fresher pair of eyes? (Well, isn't it obvious?) And in an ESOP structure, what exactly will be the CEO's role?

*Two cents: I offered up some thoughts about the Tribune deal this morning on KPCC and this afternoon on the KNX Bousiness Hour.

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Mark Lacter
Mark Lacter created the LA Biz Observed blog in 2006. He posted until the day before his death on Nov. 13, 2013.
Mark Lacter, business writer and editor was 59
The multi-talented Mark Lacter
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