Wednesday 19 June 2019

Mediahuis bid for INM granted Competition Commission approval

INM’s headquarters in Dublin’s Talbot Street
INM’s headquarters in Dublin’s Talbot Street
Donal O'Donovan

Donal O'Donovan

The proposed takeover of Independent News & Media (INM) by Belgium-headquartered Mediahuis has been approved unconditionally by the Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (CCPC).

The €145.6m acquisition remains subject to the approval of INM's own shareholders, the approval of Richard Bruton as Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment and the sanction of the High Court for an intended scheme of arrangement to effect the deal.

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An extraordinary general meeting (EGM) of INM shareholders to vote on the takeover offer will be held on June 26 at the Carlton Dublin Airport hotel, where votes to progress the scheme of arrangement to execute the deal will also take place.

The High Court will be informed of the outcome of the shareholder votes on July 4. The court must sanction the scheme, which will allow INM to be sold with the support of majority shareholder support.

The proposed acquisition requires the approval of shareholders representing at least 75pc of the value of INM's shares, as well as of 50pc plus one of all shareholders who vote.

Mediahuis announced its bid to buy INM at the end of April and the sale is expected to close in the second half of this year. The INM board has unanimously recommended the offer.

INM publishes the Irish Independent, Independent.ie, the 'Sunday Independent', 'Sunday World', 'The Herald', 'Belfast Telegraph' and is also Ireland's biggest publisher of regional newspapers.

Mediahuis publishes major newspaper titles, including 'De Telegraaf' and 'NRC Handelsblad' in the Netherlands and 'De Standaard' and 'Het Nieuwsblad' in Belgium.

It does not own any media assets in Ireland however, which means there was never likely to be any competition concerns about the deal.

Irish Independent

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