Acquisition Creating World’s Biggest Book Publisher In The Works

Bertelsmann is in a good position to buy Simon & Schuster, outbidding Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp to strengthen its position as the world’s biggest books publisher, reported the Financial Times.

The German owner of Penguin Random House was the highest bid in a fiercely fought auction for the ViacomCBS publishing arm, which fetched a price far in excess of initial estimates. Two people familiar with the process said Bertelsmann offered more than US$2 billion.

A person close to Mr Murdoch said the octogenarian media tycoon was not willing to top Bertelsmann, as he is convinced the deal will face significant regulatory hurdles, while a deal with News Corp would provide greater certainty of closing.

Want more news? Subscribe to CPI’s free daily newsletter for more headlines and updates on antitrust developments around the world.