The Journal Register (OTCBB: JRCO) Co. filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy Saturday (via Romensko and Bloomberg News). According to the filing in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York, the company reported debt of nearly $700 million against assets between $100 million and $500 million. The bankruptcy filing is part of a reorganization plan already agreed to with JPMorgan Chase Bank and 26 of its 37 secured lenders; they represent 77 percent of the outstanding debt.
In its release about the filing, Chairman and CEO James Hall said: “Journal Register Company has taken numerous steps to reduce its debt and strengthen its balance sheet through the divestiture of unprofitable newspapers, headcount reductions and various other means. However, due to the numerous challenges facing the newspaper industry and the overall economic downturn, our board of directors has decided, after careful consideration of all available alternatives, that a Chapter 11 filing was a necessary and best course of action for Journal Register Company.”
JRC is making the filings available online.
The troubled company publishes the New Haven Register, 19 other dailies, and 159 non-daily publications, in greater Philadelphia, Ohio, Connecticut, Michigan and new York. In addition to 196 websites, the company owns the JobsInTheUS online classifieds network. One of the largest unsecured debts, $749,311 is owed to the estate of former CEO Robert M. Jelenic. The largest unsecured creditor is Terri Tucker, who is owed $4.5 million following a civil lawsuit.