Tribune Publishing Debuts On New York Stock Exchange

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After more than 150 years in business, media giant Tribune Company has split in two, and its newspapers are now a stand-alone business.

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Today, Tribune Publishing makes its debut on the New York Stock Exchange. The company will operate the Tribune newspapers that serve several major cities around the country. They are now separate from the rest of the media conglomerate. NPR's Cheryl Corley reports.

CHERYL CORLEY, BYLINE: The CEO of Tribune Publishing, Jack Griffin, calls the split from what's now the Tribune Media Company an untethering from other kinds of media. He says it will allow his company of newspapers and digital properties to do one thing it hasn't been able to do for a long time.

JACK GRIFFIN: Pursue our own destiny in a very straightforward and clear way.

CORLEY: So while Tribune Media will be primarily a broadcasting business, Griffin says newspapers like the Chicago Tribune and LA Times remain the core of Tribune Publishing. That company is already working to make digital a strong percentage of its revenue.

GRIFFIN: But we have a tremendous opportunity to scale it to a much larger level.

CORLEY: The company has already launched redesigned websites for the Chicago Tribune and LA Times. Rebecca Lieb, a media analyst for Altimeter Group, say the spinoff and the changes may put Tribune Publishing on the right path.

REBECCA LIEB: It's not quite as good as Jeff Bezos swooping in, you know, on a white horse, so to speak, and taking over, like as happened to the Washington Post. But it has to be a more stable course than what the Tribune has been through in the past few years.

CORLEY: Meantime - CEO Griffin says he believes newspapers are beginning to find their natural levels of demand. Cheryl Corley, NPR News, Chicago.

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