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Citadel Broadcasting Officially Exits Bankruptcy

Citadel Broadcasting has officially exited from Chapter 11 bankruptcy. In a surprisingly brief press release sent out this evening, the two sentences contained within tell the news.

Here is that entire press release:

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CITADEL BROADCASTING CORPORATION COMPLETES FINANCIAL RESTRUCTURING AND EMERGES FROM CHAPTER 11


LAS VEGAS, Jun 03, 2010 -- Citadel Broadcasting Corporation ("Citadel") today announced that it has successfully completed its financial restructuring and emerged from Chapter 11.

Citadel's Plan of Reorganization was confirmed by the United States Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York on May 19, 2010.


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Citadel first filed a Chapter 11 petition for protection from creditors on December 20, 2009. A great deal of that debt was taken on in 2006 in order to buy a majority stake in the ABC Radio Networks from the Walt Disney Company. The company was able to complete its financial restructuring in a little over five months.

For the most part, this is good news for the Citadel-owned radio stations & programming. However...

The man who led the company into bankruptcy, CEO Farid Suleman, remains in charge. That is seen by either a good thing for Citadel or a bad thing, depending on varying perspectives.

Also, former shareholders are now left with nothing, as the shares they held have now been rendered worthless. Existing shares have been wiped out to make new stocks for the senior lenders who now get 90 percent of new common stock in the reorganized company, along with a share of a new term loan for the remaining debt. Much of the $2.1 billion dollars of secured debt that caused the Chapter 11 has been wiped away, but over $760 million of debt still remains. Since much of the debt was turned into company equity, Citadel is now owned by debtors, led by JPMorgan Chase Bank and numerous investment funds.

Citadel Broadcasting owns 224 radio stations in the United states, making it the country's third largest radio group. In Chicago, Citadel owns & operates WLS-AM 890 and WLS-FM 94.7.


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