Lagardère SCA and Time Warner Inc. (NYSE:TWX) today announced that Lagardère will acquire Time Warner Book Group, the fifth largest U.S. book publisher for US 7.5 million. Through this transaction, Lagardère’s Book Publishing branch will become #3 worldwide.
This is a major step in fulfilling a Lagardère objective to create a balanced portfolio in three main languages, French, English and Spanish.
Time Warner Book Group is a major trade publisher, with many bestselling authors, including Nelson DeMille, Nicholas Sparks, James Patterson, David Baldacci and Malcolm Gladwell. Besides adult trade, it publishes illustrated, religious and children’s books and has also developed an audio-book imprint. Time Warner Book Group is an important distributor for third party publishers, such as Disney and Microsoft.
Time Warner Book Group also operates in the U.K., Australia and New Zealand, positioning the Lagardère Book Publishing unit, with Arnaud Nourry as President and CEO, as a leading publisher in each of these three countries.
Lagardère General and Managing Partner Arnaud Lagardère said: “This acquisition of the Time Warner Book Group represents an ambitious strategic move for our Book Publishing operations, which have proven to be a source of revenue growth and improved profitability. It shows my willingness to develop our Book Publishing unit, to expand in the US -core market for the media industry- and my personal confidence in Arnaud Nourry. I welcome the people of the illustrious Time Warner Book Group. Their new home is dedicated to the values of the book publishing industry and, with Arnaud Nourry as their leader, they will be in very good hands.”
Time Warner Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Dick Parsons said: “This is a terrific transaction that is the right thing to do for both the Time Warner Book Group and our shareholders. With its record-breaking performance in 2005, the Book Group is at the top of its game. To build on this success, however, it needs the scale and other advantages that come from being part of a larger, more global book publisher. This transaction also underscores our commitment to a strategy of managing closely related, industry-leading businesses to maximize shareholder returns. We wish our Time Warner Book Group colleagues continued success and the best of luck at their new home.“
About Time Warner Inc. :
Time Warner Inc. is a leading media and entertainment company, whose businesses include interactive services, cable systems, filmed entertainment, television networks and publishing.
About Lagardère SCA :
Lagardère is a market leader in the media sector (books, press, audiovisual, and distribution/retailing of cultural products). Lagardère is listed on the Paris Stock Exchange.