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Tribune to Reduce Deal Financing

Tribune will use available cash to reduce the debt financing needed for its take-private transaction, the company announced Thursday morning.

In a statement, the company said it will use cash to downsize by $500 million its bridge loan from $2.1 billion to $1.6 billion. Tribune expects to refinance the loan with an offering of high-yield debt through financing managers Bank of America, Citigroup, JP Morgan and Merrill Lynch.

The company has hopes to close the deal by the end of the year, which would still require satisfying some remaining conditions of sale, including receiving a solvency opinion and completed financing. Last week, the company cleared a key regulatory hurdle when the Federal Communications Commission granted it newspaper-broadcast cross-ownership waivers.

Tribune agreed in March to be taken private by real estate mogul Sam Zell in an $8.2 billion transaction.