The bankruptcy court showdown is over between lendee Creative Loafing Inc. and lender Atalaya Capital Management, with judge Caryl Delano announcing that in the next several days she’ll announce her decision by conference call.
Will CEO Ben Eason retain control of the company his parents founded in 1972? Or will Atalaya, owed $31 million and accusing Eason of mismanagement, take over in lieu of getting its money back? The company filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy last September in order to reorganize, and Atalaya is insisting that since then Creative Loafing has done nothing but go downhill.
Some entertaining bloggers are now weighing in about the bankruptcy, none of them remotely disinterested. Alex Pickett, who wrote for the Tampa paper until being laid off in December, sees parallels with the Terri Schiavo “is she or is she not a vegetable” drama; Ken Edelstein, who was fired last November as editor of Creative Loafing’s Atlanta paper, says Ben Eason’s “eccentric” “Digital Transformation Strategy” is more of the “regrettable approach that’s gotten the company where it is today.”
And Erik Wemple, editor of Washington’s City Paper, which Eason bought two years ago along with the Chicago Reader in the deal that put him in over his head with debt, writes wondering why he had to take a pay cut the other day if the value of Creative Loafing has increased from $7 million to $13 million since it entered bankruptcy — something a Creative Loafing numbers cruncher testified in court.