Manchester A Step Closer to Union-Tribune Takeover

La Jollan Doug Manchester appears to be nearing his takeover of the Union-Tribune, based on an action disclosed yesterday by the Federal Trade Commission.

A document posted on the FTC website entitled "Transaction Granted Early Termination" lists Manchester and two Delaware limited partnerships, Platinum Equity Capital Jewel Partners and Project Jewel Holdings, LLC.

Under the federal Hart-Scott-Rodino Act, certain transactions regarding voting securities or other assets must await FTC review before closing, but in some cases a shortened waiting period may be requested.

According to the FTC's website, "Such a request for 'early termination' will be granted only after compliance with the rules and if both the Federal Trade Commission and Department of Justice Antitrust Division have completed their review and determined not to take any enforcement action during the waiting period."

An FTC staffer said today that no other information regarding the transaction other than that contained in the online document is available to the public.

The two Jewel partnerships were created on May 17, 2009, the month Beverly Hills-based Platinium Equity, led by Tom Gores, bought the Union-Tribune from the Copley Press, run by David Copley.

At that time, Platinum took title to the U-T building under the name San Diego Union Tribune LLC.

The combined transfer tax value of all the real estate sold by Copley Press to Platinum entities was $51.2 million, with the Union-Tribune headquarters in Mission Valley going for $35.5 million.

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