Gannett board fends off hostile takeover in victory for journalism

The Arizona Republic building at 200 E. Van Buren St. in Phoenix

Hedge fund fails to be seated on board of ‘Arizona Republic’-owned newspaper company

Gannett shareholders voted to reject MNG Enterprises’ board nominees, siding with the USA TODAY owner as it attempts to fend off a hostile takeover bid by the hedge fund-controlled newspaper company.

Gannett chairman J. Jeffry Louis announced Thursday that the company’s shareholders backed the eight board members who stood for reelection, according to preliminary results of the vote. The three nominees proposed by Alden Global Capital’s MNG Enterprises failed to gain seats on the board.

The preliminary results were revealed during Gannett’s annual meeting at the company’s headquarters in McLean, Virginia. Official certified results will be filed within days. Vote totals were not immediately available. Onlookers applauded when the results were announced. 

“This outcome demonstrates that Gannett shareholders recognize the continued progress we have made toward our ongoing digital transformation and agree that our strategic plan is the best path to deliver value for all Gannett shareholders,” interim Chief Operating Officer Barbara Wall wrote in an email to employees Thursday. “Our shareholders also understand that the broad and diverse backgrounds, professional experiences and skills of our directors make them uniquely qualified to oversee Gannett’s achievement of its strategic objectives and transformation plan.”


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