Home URBAN Creditors Seek to Put Inner City Broadcasting in Bankruptcy

Creditors Seek to Put Inner City Broadcasting in Bankruptcy

 width=One of the largest broadcasting companies targeting African-Americans and founded by civil rights leader could wind up under the control of Ron Burkle and other creditors seeking to put it in bankruptcy.

Three of the corporation’s creditors requested a bankruptcy judge put the parent of Broadcasting Corp into Chapter 11 after the owner of “urban” radio stations around the country, including and WLIB in , pulled out of a deal to restructure its debt.

In a filing Saturday with the U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Manhattan, Burkle’s Yucaipa Corporate Initiatives Fund II , Drawbridge Special Opportunities Fund Ltd and Fortress Credit Funding I LP said they are owed $254 million by the parent, Inner City Media Corp.

The creditors said Pierre Sutton, the company’s chairman and a son of Percy Sutton, scuttled a proposed prepackaged bankruptcy that would have paid unsecured creditors in full, and allowed a small payment to equity holders, which is unusual when a company is insolvent.

The creditors accused Pierre Sutton of rejecting the proposed deal to gain a bigger payout for himself, and ushering in new directors and replacing restructuring advisers who had recommended the prepackaged bankruptcy plan.

A lawyer for Inner City Media did not immediately return a call for comment.

Percy Sutton, who in 2009, was a civil rights lawyer who represented Malcolm X and was also the longest-serving president of New York‘s Manhattan borough.

During his time in office he formed Inner City and bought WLIB, making it the New York‘s first black-owned radio station.

The company went on to own as many as 18 radio stations as well as the Apollo, the famed theater in , and produced the amateur talent program “It’s Showtime at the Apollo.”

The company no longer owns the theater or produces the show.

The lenders plan would have given them the majority of the equity in the company and a reduced amount of debt. Shareholders would have received $1.2 million in cash, a 2 percent stake in the company, and warrants for 6 percent of the common and stock options of management.

The proposed plan also included a five-year employment agreement for Pierre Sutton with a $600,000 annual .

CEO of RF Focus, Radio and Music Industry Veteran. Radio DJ, Programmer, Musician and Voice Talent. Graduated from Performing Arts in Buffalo, N.Y. and worked at the legendary KKBT (92.3 The Beat) during its nationwide heyday in the early 90s. Also worked for Stevie Wonder at KJLH.