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BRIEF: Lee Enterprises announces agreement to refinance debt

Billings Gazette, Mont.

Sept. 10–Lee Enterprises, the Davenport-based newspaper publisher and owner of The Billings Gazette, the Casper Star-Tribune and several other newspapers in Montana and Wyoming, announced Thursday it has reached agreement to successfully refinance most of its outstanding debt, which was scheduled to come due in April 2012.

The agreement is “with a significant majority of the holders of its revolving credit and term loan facilities to provide for extension of maturities to 2015 and 2017,” the company said in a news release.

Mary Junck, Lee’s chairman, president and chief executive officer, called the news “excellent.”

“This is the first and biggest step in a process that we expect to conclude over the next several months,” Junck said.
Getting the support of more than 90 percent of the company’s creditors is a significant milestone, said Carl Schmidt, Lee vice president, chief financial officer and treasurer.

(c)2011 the Billings Gazette (Billings, Mont.)
Visit the Billings Gazette (Billings, Mont.) at www.billingsgazette.com
Distributed by MCT Information Services

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NOTE: According to other published reports, this information is also true…

– Lee also owns the Globe Gazette in Mason City, Iowa
– The debt amount refinanced is approximately $850 million
– If the refinancing deal fell through, Lee was considering a prepackaged Chapter 11 filing

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