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MediaNews unlikely to go after Freedom Communications

william dean singleton.jpg
Dean Singleton.
Had Freedom Communications, owner of the Colorado Springs Gazette, filed for bankruptcy during better economic times, journalism-business observers would have immediately begun speculating about the odds that it might be purchased by MediaNews Group, headed by Denver Post publisher Dean Singleton. After all, Singleton had taken a run at Freedom back in 2003, and after being rejected, the Orange County Business Journal says he dismissed members of the Hoiles family, which owned Freedom, as "naive beach boys who have invited the sharks over to swim with them." Now, however, Singleton isn't in nearly as good a position to sink his teeth into the obviously vulnerable firm. Late last month, the Post announced that it had completed a new financing agreement with its lenders, and that's a good thing from Singleton's perspective. But in comments to the OCBJ, he conceded that MediaNews remains "stressed," and he came close to expressing relief that he hadn't actually taken over Freedom six years back. Sometimes a guy gets lucky....

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