Former News-Gazette building sold to local businesswoman

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The former News-Gazette building in downtown Champaign on Monday, September 28, 2020. photo by Darrell Hoemann/C-U Citizen Access

The former owners of the News-Gazette have sold the building at 15 East Main Street in Champaign for nearly $1.2 million to local businesswoman Laura Kalman, according to documents filed in U.S Bankruptcy Court in Delaware.

The property was auctioned off on Aug. 12, with bids opening at $900,000 and the sale was concluded for $1,188,000 on Sept. 16.

Kalman is a local businesswoman who is founder and board member of CS+X Foundation, president and chief executive officer of Studio Helix, and founder and chief executive officer of North Neil Street Ltd., according to her LinkedIn profile.

Kalman did not return calls for comment.

The 53,000 square foot building housed the News-Gazette from 1984 to April 2020. The newsroom is now located in offices on Devonshire Drive.

The News-Gazette and its affiliate DWS Inc. declared bankruptcy in August 2019. The Champaign Multimedia Group LLC, an affiliate company of Community Media Group, bought the News-Gazette and DWS Inc. in November 2019.

Community Media Group is based in West Frankfort, Ill. and owns newspapers in the Midwest and on the east coast.

The proceeds of the sale will go to the creditors of News-Gazette, Inc.  At the time of declaring bankruptcy a year ago, the News-Gazette listed numerous debts including millions of dollars in pension claims. Former publisher John Reed said 95 percent of the claims are pension-related.

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