Portugal’s Cofina acquires Media Capital from Spain’s PRISA for EUR 225M

Cofina logoPortuguese publishing group Cofina has acquired Media Capital, which operates one of Portugal’s biggest TV channels, from Spanish firm PRISA (Promotora de Informaciones SA) for EUR 255 million (GBP 225 million). The terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

PRISA logo

Media Capital is the largest group in the Portuguese media sector. Founded in 1992, it owns TVI which, via its channels TVI, TVI 24, TVI Ficção, TVI Reality, TVI Africa and TVI Internacional, reaches 10 million Portuguese speakers worldwide. The group includes MCR, the leading radio group in Portugal, operating Radio Comercial, M80, Cidade, SmoothFM and Vodafone FM, in addition to 14 digital radios.

Media Capital logoThe group also operates Media Capital Digital (IOL and TVI Player), and can boast more than 390 million visits to the group’s websites and eight million followers on social networks. Media Capital is also the owner of Plural Entertainment, one of the largest producers of audiovisual content on the Iberian peninsula (winner of two Emmy awards), as well as EMAV (a technical and recording services company) and EPC (a stage construction and rental company), both with a presence in the European market.

Cofina already owns tabloid Correio da Manha and business newspaper Jornal de Negocios, among others.

A Cofina spokesperson said, “This acquisition fits with the company’s vision for the media and appears to be the one that is best able to ensure its growth and sustainability, and is in line with the global trend towards consolidation of the media sector in the last years”.

Portugal, Lisbon & Porto  & Spain, Madrid

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Future plc acquires SmartBrief for USD 45M

Future plc logoFuture plc has acquired SmartBrief Inc., a US-based digital media publisher of targeted business news and information for USD 45 million. The initial amount will include a cash consideration of USD 32.2 million funded from the Group’s existing debt facilities, with a further USD 12.8 million to be satisfied through the issue to the vendors of 1,027,492 new ordinary shares. The agreement also includes a deferred consideration based on certain financial targets achieved over the year ending 31 July 2020, which is subject to a cap of USD 20 million.

Leveraging proprietary technology and editorial expertise, SmartBrief delivers relevant industry news in partnership with trade associations, professional societies and corporations. SmartBrief owns a database of over 5.8 million subscribers made up of senior executives, thought leaders and industry professionals.

Founded in 1999 and based in Washington DC, SmartBrief creates and distributes more than 250 digital newsletters, allowing advertisers to target and engage with decision-makers and influencers across multiple sectors including food and travel, business, education, finance, health care, retail, tech, marketing and advertising. During 2018 Future extended its successful consumer strategy into B2B through the acquisition of NewBay Media in the US, which enabled Future to access the B2B market with several market-leading titles.

Zillah Byng-Thorne, CEO of Future, said, “The acquisition of SmartBrief will substantially boost our presence and market position in the B2B sector and enhance our technology capabilities.”

“SmartBrief is a leading, respected provider of sector-focused newsletters and daily email briefings covering a range of key verticals. The addition of SmartBrief’s must-read information products to our portfolio will further extend the reach of our B2B operations. The acquisition will be earnings enhancing, and we have identified several exciting opportunities to leverage SmartBrief’s proprietary technology in both our B2C and B2B business.”

UK, London & USA, Washington DC, WA

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Canal+ acquires Nollywood film studio ROK

Canal+CANAL+ Group has acquired ROK, the leading African film studio and international TV network, in a deal comprising production, content distribution and publishing channels. As part of the transaction, IROKO Ltd will also take full control of the JV IROKO+, the leading subscription video on demand (SVOD) platform in French-speaking Africa. The terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

The move comes as CANAL+ Group looks to strengthen its content production reach in Nigeria and across Africa. As part of the acquisition, ROK founder, Mary Njoku, will continue in a leadership role as Director General of ROK Productions SAS and maintains a material shareholding in the company.

In Africa alone, ROK has produced over 540 movies and 25 original TV series, making ROK one of the most prolific production houses in Nollywood.

ROK will continue to produce Nollywood content to deliver movies and original TV series for CANAL+ Group’s audiences. As part of the acquisition, CANAL+ Group will continue to collaborate with IROKO Ltd, with a non-exclusive content distribution of ROK content via the IROKOtv SVOD app.

ROK was incubated from 2013 onwards by IROKO Ltd, the leading African digital content distributor for Nollywood content, whose flagship platform IROKOtv has transformed how Nollywood content is accessed and consumed around the world.

Speaking on the acquisition, Mary Njoku said, “ROK has captured the imagination of millions of movie fans, and they have truly supported us as we’ve grown the company to celebrate and enjoy our African culture. I’m excited to be taking our platform on the next stage of its journey with CANAL+ Group, who share our passion for creating original content, supporting new talent and together, we have ambitious plans for the future.”

France, Paris & Nigeria, Lagos

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Future Media Group acquires W Magazine from Condé Nast

Future Media GroupFuture Media Group has acquired ‘W’ magazine from Condé Nast. The acquisition will bring W together with Surface and Watch Journal to form Future Media Group. The terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

The Group will continue to publish eight print issues of W annually while also expanding the brand’s digital and experiential footprint. Future Media Group has named Sara Moonves as the magazine’s new editor-in-chief. Moonves, who previously worked at Vogue and at T:The New York Times Style Magazine, joined the staff of W as Style Director in 2017.

Marc Lotenberg, CEO of Future Media Group, said “W has always been an extraordinary and visionary arbiter of style. For over 45 years, its pages have been filled with indelible imagery and exciting journalism. We look forward to honoring and building on that legacy. We know that W will serve as a perfect complement to the publications already in our portfolio.”

“Sara has impeccable taste and a keen eye for how a media brand should evolve in today’s fast-paced media landscape. She has enormous credibility in the fashion community, not to mention a forward-thinking sensibility that will bring W beyond its core print distribution into various offline, online and augmented formats.”

Future Media Group will operate W offices in Paris, Milan and New York, as well as a soon-to-be established bureau in Los Angeles.

USA, New York, NY

Easyfairs acquires Aesthetics Media

EasyfairsGlobal exhibition organiser Easyfairs has acquired the Aesthetics Media portfolio, which includes the Aesthetics Conference & Exhibition (ACE), the Aesthetics journal print and digital platform and the Aesthetics Awards. The terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

With a complementary event, Clinical Cosmetic Regenerative (CCR), already in its stable, the acquisition is set to make Easyfairs the leading media provider to suppliers in the UK aesthetics sector.

Matt Benyon, Head of Easyfairs UK & Global, said, “We can now offer customers a phenomenal breadth of products and unparalleled opportunities to engage with aesthetics professionals – it’s a true 360-degree offering. This latest acquisition demonstrates, once again, our commitment to constantly invest in and develop our core markets. Companies in the aesthetics sector often have very different approaches, products, budgets and strategies. We recognise this fact and are utterly focused on meeting all of their needs, helping them prosper and grow. We are now incredibly well equipped to do just that.”

ACE is timed for Spring and aimed at healthcare professionals who practise medical aesthetics, such as dentists, doctors and nurses.

The combined exhibitions, awards and publication will be managed by Easyfairs UK & Global business, with the entire Aesthetics Media team joining Easyfairs as part of the acquisition.

In 2018 Easyfairs was named Belgium’s ‘Entrepreneur of the Year®’ and the company is ranked 18 in the world’s leading exhibition companies.

Easyfairs currently organises more than 218 events in 17 countries and employs 750 people and generates revenues exceeding €157m for its financial year 2017-2018.

Belgium, Brussels & UK, London

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Byron Allen’s Entertainment Studios acquires Bayou City Broadcasting for $165M

Entertainment StudiosEntertainment Studios, Inc., one of the US’s largest independent producers and distributors of film and television, with 43 shows on the air, and owner of nine 24-hour HD television networks serving nearly 160 million subscribers, has acquired Bayou City Broadcasting Evansville, Inc., and Bayou City Broadcasting Lafayette, Inc for $165 million. Founder Byron Allen is purchasing the station groups through his company, Allen Media Broadcasting LLC. The terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

Byron Allen, who recently joined Sinclair Broadcast Group to successfully acquire the Fox/Disney 21 Regional Sports Networks for $10.6 billion, and also purchased The Weather Channel in 2018, has publicly stated he has been aggressively pursuing additional media assets to purchase. The purchase of these four Bayou City Broadcasting entities — WEVV (CBS) & WEEV (Fox) in Evansville, Indiana and KLAF (NBC) and KADN (Fox) in Lafayette, Louisiana — provides Allen’s television unit with a broader audience and strategically positions the company in broadcast and digital media.

Bayou City Broadcasting Owner/President/CEO DuJuan McCoy said, “Byron Allen is a visionary, and a brilliant entrepreneur who always gets it done. [His] companies, which exemplify excellence, are perfectly positioned to continue the strong tradition these stations have in serving their communities.”

Allen’s expansion into broadcast television is the latest step Entertainment Studios has taken in further expanding the global reach of its programming and content. The Entertainment Studios divisions now include: broadcast television network affiliates, streaming services, broadcast television syndication, production and distribution of 43 television programs, nine 24/7 HD television networks, theatrical motion picture production, acquisition and global distribution, digital movie acquisition and distribution, and global news publishing – making Entertainment Studios one of the largest privately-held media companies in the world.

USA, Los Angeles, CA & The Woodlands, TX

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Mediahuis to acquire Irish newspaper group INM for GBP 125.7M

MediahuisEuropean media group Mediahuis has agreed to buy Ireland’s largest newspaper group, Independent News & Media, for GBP 125.7 million in its first major deal outside Belgium and the Netherlands. Under the terms of the acquisition, INM shareholders will receive 10.5 cents (9p) per share.

INM publishes the Irish Independent, the Sunday Independent, the Sunday World, The Herald, the Belfast Telegraph and other regional newspapers, accounting for more than 50% of the daily market and over 65% of the Sunday market in the Republic of Ireland.

Privately-owned Mediahuis, which sells more than 1.4 million newspapers a day in The Netherlands and Belgium including the De Telegraaf and De Standaard titles, said it saw a big potential in improving the Irish company’s online business. Founded in 2013, Mediahuis has grown rapidly through acquisitions and has a track record of combining innovative journalism with digital subscription services and paywalls.

Mediahuis chairman Thomas Leysen said, “We have the resources and the capabilities to further the digital transformation and enhance the digital capabilities of INM. We think it’s a good match”.

Belgium, Antwerp & Ireland, Dublin

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