Tribune Publishing Denies Rumors Of Sale After Murdoch Tweet

Nov 30 (Reuters) – Tribune Publishing Co said it was not in talks or in the process of selling itself, after a tweet by News Corp’s Rupert Murdoch on Friday that suggested Tribune’s newspaper group would be sold.

Tribune Publishing’s shares were up 4.3 percent at $9.69, in early trading.

Murdoch said in a tweet that he had “strong word” that the company’s newspaper group, which includes the Chicago Tribune, would be bought by a Wall Street firm.

Murdoch said the Los Angeles Times would be split off and bought by local investors including philanthropist Eli Broad.

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In the past, the daily has attracted interest from entertainment executive David Geffen, supermarket magnate Ron Burkle, as well as Broad.

Murdoch denied any interest in bidding for the assets, in a reply to a comment made on his tweet.

“Tribune Publishing remains committed to its strategy and transformation plan and is not engaged in discussions or a process to sell the company,” it said in a letter to employees on Monday that was also filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Politico, citing sources, reported on Friday that Apollo Global Management had approached Tribune Publishing about a month ago.

Tribune Publishing has been “non-responsive,” and unwilling to schedule meetings after Apollo expressed interest, Politico said.

Tribune spun off its publishing assets into Tribune Publishing in 2014, and renamed the parent company, which houses its broadcasting and digital assets, as Tribune Media Co . (Reporting by Anya George Tharakan in Bengaluru; Editing by Shounak Dasgupta)

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