Crain’s Headlines: Judge Appoints Examiner in Sears Bankruptcy Fight

The bankrupt estate of Sears Holdings Corporation and the hedge fund division that bought the retailer’s troubled remains out of bankruptcy have been engaged in an ugly fight over the value of certain assets ever since the $5 billion deal was struck back in February.

Now a federal judge overseeing the Sears bankruptcy has appointed a financial examiner to settle differences between the retailer and ESL Investments, the hedge fund controlled by Sears former CEO, Eddie Lampert.

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The Sears estate sued Lampert in April for allegedly transferring billions of dollars in company assets when the retailer was insolvent. Lampert countersued for allegedly failing to deliver hundreds of millions of dollars of assets called for by the sales agreement.

Bloomberg reports the judge is now forcing both sides to comply with the examiner’s efforts to resolve their differences.

In other Chicago-area business news:

A longtime North Side real estate investor is buying a riverside site near the planned Lincoln Yards development, ending a troubled saga for the Bucktown property.

A buyer has agreed to pay $4.7 million for the parcel at the northwest corner of Ashland Avenue and Webster Street, the former home of the Green Dolphin Street Club and Rio Chicago.

The property gained notoriety after a spate of violence, including two fatal shootings at Green Dolphin in 2015. The club was renamed Rio Chicago, and the city ordered it closed after the shooting of a bouncer there in 2016.

With its proximity to Lincoln Yards, the property is considered to have strong potential as a development site.

And finally, after months of wrangling, Tribune Publishing and Sun-Times Media have reached an agreement for Tribune to continue printing and distributing the Chicago Sun-Times. That’s according to an internal email obtained by Crain’s.

Terms of the deal were not disclosed. In 2017, the contract cost the Sun-Times around $25 million a year, and sources say the company explored other printing options before eventually re-upping with Tribune. 

Crain’s Headlines is a joint production between WTTW and Crain’s Chicago Business. It airs every Monday through Thursday on the WTTW News program “Chicago Tonight.” 

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