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UPDATE 1-TV operator Young Broadcasting files bankruptcy

NEW YORK, Feb 13 (Reuters) - Young Broadcasting Inc YBTVA.PK, the owner of 10 television stations, on Friday filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection, and said it will use the reorganization process to reduce debt.

The New York-based company and 24 affiliates filed for protection with creditors with the U.S. bankruptcy court in Manhattan. Young said it had had $575.6 million of assets and $980.4 million of debts as of Sept. 30, as well as $640 million of publicly traded debt, according to the bankruptcy petition.

Five of Young’s TV stations are affiliated with ABC, three with CNS, one with NBC and one with MyNetwork. The largest market serviced is San Francisco, with the NBC station KRON-TV. The company also operates a national television representation firm, Adam Young Inc.

Chairman Vincent Young in a statement said the bankruptcy filing “will allow the company to bring its debt in line with current economic realities,”

The company said its TV stations will continue to operate without interruption.

The case is In re Young Broadcasting Inc., U.S. Bankruptcy Court, Southern District of New York (Manhattan), No. 09-10645. (Reporting by Jonathan Stempel; Editing by Gary Hill)