Young Stations Going to Lenders

"Highest offer" for stations comes from the bankers

It appears no bids on the Young stations met the minimum the company was looking for, so the struggling broadcaster's bankers look to assume control of Young Broadcasting.

"We received initial bids on Friday and spent the weekend reviewing them with our professionals," Chairman Vincent Young said in a memo to employees today. "The highest offer received was from our existing senior lenders. After speaking with the other qualified bidders, it became clear that they were not prepared to exceed that bid."

These senior lenders, a consortium of banks, bid $220 million. Young will ask the bankruptcy court to approve the bid July 22nd.  

UBS has been handling the sale for Young. An auction was to take place Tuesday, but the bids did not appear to merit the need for one, so Young called it off. H.I.G. Capital was said to be a bullish bidder for the stations, at least early on.

Vincent Young said the company, which owns 10 stations, looks to emerge from bankruptcy "later this year with our lenders as our principal shareholders."

Young entered Chapt. 11 in February.

Young executives are to appear before Bankruptcy Court Wednesday to report on the "substantial progress" toward an agreement with its lenders. A subsequent court appearance next week will be to seek an order approving the transaction.

Chairman Young said having the lenders take over will dramatically reduce Young's crippling debt and give the company "an improved capital structure that will make us more competitive in the current economic environment."