NatMag 'could bid for BBC Magazines'

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The National Magazine Company chief executive Arnaud de Puyfontaine has indicated that his company is considering a bid to take a controlling interest in BBC Magazines.

The BBC said last month that it was pressing ahead with the partial sell-off of its magazine business, which publishes titles including the Radio Times and Top Gear, by asking potential buyers to make formal expressions of interest before Christmas.

In interview with the Daily Telegraph, De Puyfontaine said he was “excited” by the sale of a majority stake in the broadcaster’s magazine wing.

He also outlined how he wanted to reduce his company’s dependence on print advertising and circulation revenue by reducing it as a total of company income from its present level of 85 per cent to around 50 per cent by 2015.

De Puyfontaine told the Telegraph he wanted to lead: “a business of which 50 per cent is generated by revenues coming from digital, events, data mining, e-commerce, transactions, below the line and ancillary revenues”.

He also outlined new ventures the company has proposed, including IPTV channels for leading brands like Cosmopolitan, Men’s Health, and Good Housekeeping and indicated that he had no plans to close any magazines in the short term.

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