Three private equity firms have formed an alliance to consider buying newspaper publisher Knight Ridder Inc., the Wall Street Journal reported on Thursday.
The Blackstone Group, Providence Equity Partners Inc. and Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co. are in the early stages of preparation for a possible deal for the company, the paper said, citing people familiar with the matter.
However, the firms are concerned that the publisher’s $4 billion market capitalization is too high, according to the report.
Knight Ridder, the publisher of newspapers including the Philadelphia Inquirer and San Jose Mercury News, put itself up for a possible sale last month, bowing to demands from two large stockholders unhappy about its depressed stock price.
The Journal said that first-round bids for the company are due Dec. 9, again citing people familiar with the matter.