Lee newspaper chain tries to ward off a hostile takeover

(Ethan Stein)
Published: Nov. 28, 2021 at 1:38 PM CST
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DAVENPORT, Iowa (AP) — The Lee Enterprises newspaper chain has adopted a “poison-pill” plan to protect itself from a hostile takeover while it considers an unsolicited offer from hedge fund Alden Global Capital to buy Lee for $24 a share. The plan would take effect if Alden gains control of more than 10% of Lee’s stock in the next year.

The Davenport, Iowa-based company said the plan would allow its other shareholders to buy shares at a 50% discount at that point or possibly get free shares for every share they already own.

Alden said last week that it already owed more than 6% of Lee’s stock. The plan Lee adopted Wednesday would make it more expensive for Alden to acquire a controlling stake.

Lee owns the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, the Buffalo News and dozens of other newspapers including nearly every daily newspaper in Nebraska.

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