Belo said Monday it plans to spin off its newspapers -- which have been struggling to keep readers and advertising dollars -- into a new company that will operate separately from its 20 television stations.
Belo shares rose $2.70, or 15.6 percent, to $20.06 in midday trading after rising as high as $21.99, or 24 percent, earlier in the day. Its shares have traded in a 52-week range of $15.61 to $22.94.
Investors had pressed Belo to consider splitting the TV and newspaper businesses, but Chairman and Chief Executive Robert Decherd had resisted. In February, he said the newspaper side of the company was too small to stand on its own.
On Monday, Decherd said the split recognized the "profound" changes in both businesses, and was good for shareholders.
Decherd will run the newspaper business, which will be called A.H. Belo, the company's name from 1865 until 2001.
It will own the company's flagship paper, The Dallas Morning News, as well as The Providence Journal and The Press-Enterprise of Riverside, Calif. It also will own the newspapers' Web sites, direct mail and commercial printing businesses.
Those operations have about 3,800 workers and annual revenue of about $750 million.