Chicago Sun-Times sold to group of investors led by former alderman

July 13 (Reuters) - A group of investors led by a former Chicago alderman on Wednesday purchased the Sun-Times, out-bidding the owners of the Chicago Tribune for its main rival and ending a federal antitrust investigation into the sale.

Former Chicago Alderman Edwin Eisendrath and the group of investors beat out Tronc Inc., the owner of the Chicago Tribune as well as the Los Angeles Times and Baltimore Sun, for the tabloid, the Chicago newspapers reported on Wednesday.

“It’s a great town as you know and it will continue to have two great newspapers,” Eisendrath said on Twitter in announcing the deal.

The U.S. Department of Justice’s Antitrust Division opened an investigation in May into the possible sale of the Sun-Times to Tronc and monitored the bidding closely.

The department said in a statement on Wednesday that it closed its investigation with the paper’s sale to ST Acquisition Holdings LLC, the investor group.

The terms of the deal between ST Acquisition Holdings and Sun-Times parent Wrapports LLC were not made public.

Corporate restructuring expert William Brandt, the Chicago Federation of Labor, local labor unions and about a half-dozen other individuals make up the investor group, the Sun-Times reported.

Labor unions in the city applauded the sale, which also included the Chicago Reader, a weekly.

“The little guy won here,” said Chicago Federation of Labor President Jorge Ramirez to the Sun-Times. “This is about fair, honest and balanced reporting. The Sun-Times has a rich history of that.”

Wrapports has an annual $25 million contract with Tronc to print and distribute the Sun-Times. The contract is a major source of revenue for Tronc and one of the reasons it wanted to purchase the newspaper, the Sun-Times reported. (Reporting by Brendan O’Brien in Milwaukee; Editing by Muralikumar Anantharaman)