Canwest shuffles Post

As part of restructuring plan, newspaper to rejoin publishing division, pending creditor approval.

Canwest Global Communications has reached a deal to transfer the National Post newspaper to a new entity, subject to court and creditor approval as part of an overall restructuring of the Canadian media group.

National Post, which was not part of Canwest Global’s voluntary filing for creditor protection on Oct. 6, now becomes a new, wholly owned subsidiary of Canwest Limited Partnership, the broadcaster’s newspaper division.

All National Post employees will be offered employment as part of Canwest Ltd. Partnership, which also assumes their pension obligations.

National Post was separated from Canwest Global’s other print assets in 2005 when the broadcaster created the publicly listed CanWest MediaWorks Income Fund to raise $1.45 billion.

‘Going forward, I believe that this move will strengthen the future of the Post as well as the family of newspapers it now joins,’ Canwest Global CEO Leonard Asper said in a statement after the National Post was reunited with the publishing division.

The transfer of the Post is also contingent on approval from Canwest Global’s U.S. bondholders and senior lenders, which control the broadcaster’s destiny and are set to be majority shareholders once the media giant emerges from court protection.

Canwest Ltd. Partnership ceased interest payments to its bond-holders in August and is currently engaged in debt talks separate from those conducted by Canwest Global’s holding company, Canwest Media Inc.

Canwest Ltd. Partnership is expected to similarly file for creditor protection ahead of a likely sale of the newspaper division, with National Post included.

From Playback Daily