Penton Media to File Chapter 11 Bankruptcy Protection

Publisher, active in broadcast niche, cites debt restructuring agreement with lenders
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Publisher, active in broadcast niche, cites debt restructuring agreement with lenders

B2B media company Penton Media said it intends to file for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection now that it has reached a restructuring agreement with its lenders to eliminate $270 million in debt.

Penton also said some of its shareholders would make a “significant new investment” in the company, which will provide additional working capital to fund operations and improve Penton’s overall liquidity.

Publications in its digital and media communications arm include Broadcast Engineering and Radio magazine. Penton also publishes professional recording and sound production technology publication Mix, home and personal studio publication Electronic Musician as well as Sound and Video Contractor.

Penton CEO Sharon Rowlands said the restructuring will allow the company to achieve a debt level that is “more sustainable” in the current economic environment.

The media company expects to implement the capital restructuring through a “pre-packaged” Chapter 11 reorganization plan and file that with the court in the next few days. It said it expects to emerge from Chapter 11 within 30 to 45 days.

Penton intends to operate as usual throughout the restructuring and said it has solid cash flow and sufficient liquidity to meet its obligations. It said there will be no management changes or change in control. “Employees will continue to be paid and receive their benefits without interruption,” said Rowlands.

Founded in 1892, privately held Penton Media is owned by MidOcean Partners and U.S. Equity Partners II, an investment fund sponsored by Wasserstein & Co., LP, and its co-investors. Headquarters in New York , Penton publishes and produces 113 trade magazines as well as industry-specific Web sites. It also conducts associated conferences. Penton says nine of its publications are more than 100 years old. Its oldest publication is the “Kansas City Implement & Farm Journal.”