Irvine-based Freedom Communications, which came out of bankruptcy protection two years ago, has been in the process of selling off some of its properties. There's been considerable speculation that Freedom is shopping its biggest asset, the OC Register, and earlier this month the CEO of the SD Union-Tribune said his paper was close to buying the Register. But the next day he distanced himself from that comment. As for today's sale, the four papers are the Telegraph in Alton, Ill., the Journal-Courier in Jacksonville, Ill., the Sedalia Democrat in Sedalia, Mo., and the Lima News in Ohio. Buyer is private equity firm Versa Capital Management. No purchase price announced. From the Register:
Last November, Freedom announced the sale of its eight television stations to Sinclair Broadcast Group Inc. The $385 million deal, which closed in April, left Freedom free of the $325 million in debt it had after emerging from bankruptcy. In January, Freedom sold The Tribune in Seymour, Ind., and the News Journal in Clovis, N.M., to Clovis Media Inc. There has been no announcement about the status of the Register.