Michael Ferro, a modern day media baron, has gobbled up the largest share of Tribune Publishing, the parent company that owns the Los Angeles Times, the Chicago Tribune, and other daily papers. Ferro's investment firm Merrick Media bought 5.2 million shares in what amounts to about a $44.4 million dollar deal. Ferro will now be the Executive Director of the board and will forfeit his operational control of Wrapports, which owns the Chicago Sun-Times.
Ferro, 49, grew up in the western suburbs of Chicago graduating from Naperville North High School. Ferro was a born entrepreneur who had a roofing business while still in high school that had 70 employees. After going to college at University of Illinois, Ferro's big break came when he and a group of other wealthy Chicagoans formed Wrapports to purchase the Sun-Times.
The majority stake in Tribune Publishing will most certainly put Tribune Publishing in a better position to buy the Orange County Register. Last Year, Tribune purchased the San Diego Union Tribune. Tribune Publishing has its sights set on buying the premier and dominating media presence in Southern California. Ferro's sitting at the top of Tribune brings a nice cash boost.
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