Peter Kafka

Recent Posts by Peter Kafka

New York Times: November Terrible, but Our Debt Problems Are Under Control. Anyone Want to Lend Us Money?

New York Times (NYT) CEO Janet Robinson and her CFO, James Follo, are speaking at the UBS media conference later this afternoon. But they want to get the news out in advance: They had a miserable November, but they’re confident they can deal with looming debt problems.

The details, via a release:

  • October, which was terrible, was better than November:In November, the rate of change in advertising revenue declined from what we saw in October. The entertainment, real estate and automotive advertising categories were especially soft.”
  • That $400 million credit line that expires in May? Don’t worry about it: “We have no intention or need of fully replacing the $400 million credit facility expiring next year because our total borrowing under both agreements is projected to be significantly less than $800 million, and currently is approximately $400 million.”
  • And that $225 million we might raise by mortgaging our HQ? That’s not a fire sale:The proceeds will be used to repay existing long-term debt. The building provides a unique opportunity for us to borrow at attractive rates in today’s market.
  • Also, would anyone like to invest in our company and/or lend us money?We are also looking at various other financing alternatives, including revolvers, public offerings or private placements. While the credit markets remain challenging, we expect to secure the financing necessary to meet our maturities when they come due”
  • This won’t shock you, but we are going to spend a lot less money on things that aren’t people, paper or ink next year: Capital expenditures will drop from $140 million in 2008 to $80 million in 2009.