MNG launches proxy fight to overhaul Gannett board

(Reuters) - Newspaper chain MNG Enterprises announced a proxy fight against Gannett Co on Thursday by nominating six directors to its board, days after the USA Today owner rejected MNG’s $1.36 billion buyout offer.

Gannett had said on Monday MNG’s offer undervalued the company and was not credible.

MNG, better known as Digital First Media, said it was still pursuing an all-cash deal to buy Gannett at $12 per Gannett share.

The company met with Gannett executives on Thursday and addressed all questions posed by Gannett’s board to pursue the negotiated deal, MNG said in a statement.

“Gannett categorically refused to extend the deadline for director nominations before meeting with us,” it added.

MNG held a 7.5 percent stake in Gannett as of January.

Gannett said separately on Thursday its shareholders need not take any action at this time and that it would provide a date for the annual meeting.

The Wall Street Journal earlier reported that MNG was launching a proxy fight against Gannett.

Reporting by Debroop Roy and Arjun Panchadar in Bengaluru; Editing by Anil D’Silva and Sai Sachin Ravikumar