According to the Brainerd Dispatch, its owner, the Georgia-based Morris Publishing Group, will file Chapter 11 bankruptcy next week. Morris also owns Lake Country Echo in Pequot Lakes and the Pine River Journal.
The bankruptcy is “prepackaged,” meaning most debtors have agreed to a restructuring, though a judge must sign off. Morris had hoped to get 99 percent approval from debtors for a restructuring that would swap $278.5 million in debt for $100 million, but only received 75 percent approval, necessitating the court action.
As is so often the case, owners say the reorg is not expected to have “any noticeable impact” on ongoing operations. However, creditors who object to the debt shucking can always mess with best-laid plans. Still, pre-packs often get through court more quickly than traditional bankruptcies. The Star Tribune made it through a non-pre-packed bankruptcy in roughly nine months, which was fairly fast.