Gannett shareholders contain voted to reject MNG Enterprises’ board nominees, siding with the United States TODAY owner because it attempts to fend off a hostile takeover portray by the hedge fund-controlled newspaper company.

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

The preliminary results had been printed throughout Gannett’s annual assembly. Reputable certified results will likely be filed inner days. Vote totals had been no longer straight away accessible. Onlookers applauded when the outcomes had been launched. 

Bernard Lunzer, president of the NewsGuild union, praised Gannett for taking a stand in opposition to the MNG nominees.

“I applaud Gannett for serene believing in sustainable journalism,” Lunzer acknowledged. “It is a engaging job loyal now. We judge there could be a convincing future.”

MNG in January made an unsolicited provide to assign Gannett for $12 per part. Gannett rejected the portray as no longer credible and argued that MNG’s nominees had potential conflicts of hobby.

While MNG could maybe presumably serene pursue an acquisition, its failure to get seats on Gannett’s board reflects a first-rate setback in its efforts. With seats on the board, MNG would perhaps contain agitated for a probably deal.

MNG gave no indication whether it could perhaps presumably proceed its campaign to assign Gannett.

“That is a eradicate for an entrenched Gannett Board that has been unwilling to address the present realities of the newspaper swap, and sadly a loss for Gannett and its shareholders,” MNG acknowledged in an announcement. “Gannett’s newspapers are serious local sources, and we hope that Gannett’s incumbent Board and Management shift path to embody a contemporary technique to local news that can put newspapers and aid communities. That would perhaps well be the most fascinating consequence. If Gannett’s Board would no longer shift route from overpaying for non-core, aspirational and dilutive digital gives, we judge the stock will fall extra.”

Stockholder advisory corporations Institutional Shareholder Services and Glass Lewis had called into place a matter to MNG’s capability to finance the portray but acknowledged that $12 per part could maybe presumably be an inexpensive initiating level for talks. Gannett’s stock rose 2 cents to $8.89 per part in morning shopping and selling. 

Advisory company weighs in: Gannett wins backing of Glass Lewis in fight with MNG

Antagonistic takeover try: Gannett says MNG’s proposed deal could maybe presumably be overloaded with debt

Gannett board members successful reelection had been Chairman John Jeffry Louis, John E. Cody, Stephen Coll, Donald Felsinger, Lila Ibrahim, Lawrence S. Kramer, Debra A. Sandler and Chloe R. Sladden.

MNG, otherwise is named Digital First Media, had nominated three members: outmoded MNG CEO Steven Rossi, Cogent Neighborhood Significant Dana Goldsmith Needleman and Alden President and MNG Vice Chairman Heath Freeman.

ISS backed Rossi but did no longer endorse the opposite two. Glass Lewis did no longer endorse any of MNG’s nominees.

MNG had previously nominated six folks to the board but withdrew three amid mounting scrutiny of Alden’s note fable of cuts and investment miscues.

Gannett has argued that it has an achievable knowing for digital transformation while closely managing charges. MNG has argued that Gannett have to serene quit investing in digital enterprises and desires to “loyal dimension overhead charges.”

Gannett Chairman Louis acknowledged the corporate is “laser centered on transformation” and is successfully transitioning to a swap mannequin that “positions the corporate to thrive in the digital future.”  

Critics squawk that MNG’s note fable of imposing steep rate cuts at its newspapers, including the Denver Put up and San Jose Mercury News, is no longer a recipe for development.

Contributing: Paul Davidson

Apply USA TODAY reporter Nathan Bomey on Twitter @NathanBomey.

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