Press Releases
July 13, 2017

NEWLY-FORMED GROUP ANNOUNCES PURCHASE OF CHICAGO SUN-TIMES, OTHER WRAPPORTS PROPERTIES AND ANSWERS MEDIA

Announcing the purchase of the Chicago Sun-Times and other properties.

Today, ST Acquisition Holdings, LLC, a group organized by the Chicago Federation of Labor (CFL) and Edwin Eisendrath, announced the finalization of its acquisition of the Wrapports, LLC properties of the Chicago Sun-Times, Chicago Reader and the straightdope.com website. As a separate acquisition, the newly-formed group also purchased Answers Media, a full service digital communications company. The terms of the deals were not disclosed.

"This is a historic coalition of workers and like-minded investors who represent a cross-section of the Chicago population, coming together with one common goal: to preserve independent media entities in Chicago and protect their journalistic integrity. This effort amplifies the diversity of voices and perspectives of Chicago stories both locally and nationally," said CFL President Jorge Ramirez, who will serve as Chairman of the Chicago Sun-Times.

The acquisition group’s intent is to meld these pieces into a powerful, multiplatform news organization, while sustaining the Chicago Sun-Times legacy as a trusted news brand.

“We are investing in a journalistic voice that’s genuine, accurate and consistently reporting news that matters to the people of Chicago. We are inspired by the journalistic excellence of the Chicago Sun-Times, the Chicago Reader and the Straight Dope website,” said Edwin Eisendrath, who will serve as CEO of the Chicago Sun-Times. “The additional acquisition of Answers Media will allow us to expand and contemporize these channels with high-quality multimedia content and innovative technology solutions that will attract a broad audience of new readers and advertising partners.”

“The primary goal in seeking out new ownership for the Sun-Times and Wrapports LLC’s other properties was to find a buyer who was willing to make the investments necessary to sustain the editorial independence and viability of our publications long into the future,” said Jim Kirk, editor/publisher of the Chicago Sun-Times. “We look forward to working with the new ownership group to bring new technology and other innovative approaches to support our world-class team of journalists.”

Kirk and other members of the Sun-Times leadership team have been asked to stay on to ensure both quality and continuity of operations.

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Shareholders of ST Acquisition Holdings, LLC

Chicago Federation of Labor
The Chicago Federation of Labor is the third-largest central labor council of the AFL-CIO in the United States representing approximately 300 local unions comprised of over half a million union members in Chicago and Cook County.

LIUNA Chicago Laborers’ District Council
LIUNA Chicago Laborers’ District Council represents a diverse group of over 20,000 hard working men and women in the construction, municipal, and industrial sectors, belonging to fifteen Laborers’ Locals in the nine counties covering the Chicagoland area.

Chicago Regional Council of Carpenters’ Labor & Management Committee
The Chicago Regional Council of Carpenters’ Labor & Management Committee represents tens of thousands of working men and women throughout 72 counties in Illinois and Eastern Iowa. Our members include professionals trained in these specialties: General Carpenter, Residential Carpenter, Exhibit and Display Installer, Interior Systems Carpenter, Lather, Cabinetmaker and Millworker, Flooring Installer, Pile Driver, Millwright, Insulation Installer, Shingling and Siding Installer, and Concrete Forming. We are proud to be a positive force in building communities®.

Gompers-Lewis Media Corp.
Gompers-Lewis Media Corp. is an LLC owned by the International Union of Operating Engineers Local 150, a labor union representing 23,000 working men and women employed as heavy equipment operators in Illinois, Indiana and Iowa.

SEIU Healthcare Illinois Indiana Missouri & Kansas
SEIU Healthcare Illinois Indiana Missouri & Kansas represents 90,000 home care, hospital, childcare, and nursing home workers across the four states.

SEUI Local 1
Service Employees International Union Local 1 unites 50,000 workers throughout the Midwest, including janitors, security officers, higher education faculty, food service workers, and others. Local 1 is committed to improving the lives of its members and all working people by winning real economic justice and standing at the forefront of the fight for immigrant, racial, and environmental justice.

The following investors have given permission for their names to be shared. Others are remaining anonymous.

  • Jeff Bohnson
  • Bill Brandt
  • John Eisendrath
  • Stuart Ellison
  • Leonard Goodman
  • Sidney Herman
  • Elzie Higginbottom
  • Linda Yu

Quotes

Investor Leonard Goodman

“I’m proud to be part of the group that will sustain this iconic newspaper as an independent news source for Chicago. The Sun-Times has been in my home since I was a kid. Our partnership with Labor helps ensure that it will continue to be a voice for working people.”

LIUNA Chicago Laborers’ District Council – James P. Connolly, Business Manager

“In an era in which news is dominated by corporate interests, the members of the LIUNA Chicago Laborers’ District Council believe it’s especially important to maintain the Sun-Times as an independent newspaper that covers the issues affecting the interests and perspectives of the working and middle classes.”

Chicago Regional Council of Carpenters - Frank T. Libby, President and Executive Secretary – Treasurer

“Today we are proud to support the Sun-Times—Chicago’s oldest continuously published daily newspaper and a bedrock in this city for quality journalism. This agreement gives a new level of energy, commitment and a voice to the hard-working men and women who have built this city to be one of the world’s greatest treasures. Our Chicago Regional Council of Carpenters’ Labor & Management Committee represents tens of thousands of men and women in the construction industry who not only work in the Chicago metropolitan area but live in and raise families in this great city and its surrounding communities, all of which demand fair, responsible and honest journalism.”

IUOE Local 150 - Jim Sweeney, President-Business Manager

“Maintaining Chicago as a two-newspaper city will support a healthy public discourse, and the Sun-Times will deliver news that reflects the interests and values of hardworking Chicagoans.”

SEIU Healthcare Illinois Indiana Missouri & Kansas - Greg Kelley, President

“In an era where corporate capital is purchasing media outlets across the country and, thereby, limiting the voices expressed in public discourse to those that benefit big business, we are proud that we are able to keep Chicago as a two-paper town where the voices of working families will have an outlet through an independent paper like the Chicago Sun-Times.”

SEIU Local 1 - Tom Balanoff, President

“We are pleased that the Chicago Sun-Times will remain an independent, free-standing institution where progressive voices of working people who are fighting for real economic justice, while standing at the forefront of the fight for immigrant, racial, and environmental justice, will continue to be heard.”

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