Zell Trying to Keep Company Head Above Water

Tribune owner says bankruptcy is 'pre-emptive'

Sam Zell, the chairman and chief executive of Tribune Co., said Wednesday that his company's decision to seek bankruptcy protection this week grew out of a desire to maintain Tribune's long-term value, Crain's Chicago Business reported.

"In the end, my responsibility is to preserve the value of the company and to make sure that it will go on into the future," he said in an interview on CNBC. "Our action was pre-emptive in nature so as to preserve the assets of the company and create the opportunity for a reorganization."

Tribune, which publishes the Los Angeles Times, Chicago Tribune, The (Baltimore) Sun and other dailies, filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection Monday amid a severe downturn in advertising because of the recession.

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