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More on the Star Tribune’s antitrust lawyers

Last week, I asked for some help interpreting a filing by a firm that has given the Star Tribune antitrust advice. I’m always on the lookout for signs of the Strib and Pioneer Press further combining operations.

A lawyer with experience in bankruptcy matters sent me this analysis, asking to be anonymous because it’s speculation:

About your inquiry regarding the Washington, D.C. lawfirm’s $314.00 bill in 2008 for anti-trust work:

I can speculate that [the firm] doesn’t want its bill to be discharged because it will continue to provide “new value” (bankruptcy term of art) while the paper is in Chapter 11, particularly on the anti-trust issue.

It’s no secret that there has been discussion of combining the PiPress with the Strib, but the question has been how and what.

I think it’s reasonable conjecture that this firm is looking to posture itself to be a prominent player in the Plan of Reorganization’s proposition that the company emerging from Chapter 11 will be stronger, because it will be a consolidated entity without the “shackles” of burdensome Collective Bargaining Agreements.

Basically, this means the D.C.-based firm, Baker Hostetler, thinks more antitrust work will be coming from a “healthier” post-bankruptcy Strib — and wants a piece of it.

I’ve put a call into Donald Workman, the Baker attorney who made the filing, but no callback yet. Other insights welcome.

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Comments (3)

  1. Submitted by William Souder on 03/30/2009 - 05:05 pm.

    Whoa! A de-unionized consolidated entity? Aren’t we getting a little ahead of ourselves here?

  2. Submitted by David Brauer on 03/30/2009 - 05:21 pm.

    This from the guy who thinks print is dead any minute?

  3. Submitted by William Souder on 03/30/2009 - 07:27 pm.

    Well, yeah…pretty much. That sounds like way too rosy a scenario to me.

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