Report: Guardian and Apex to sell off Emap B2B titles

Publisher Emap has reportedly lined up a corporate adviser Hawkpoint to sell of its trade magazines division.

The Independent reports the company, owned by private equity group Apax and Guardian Media Group, ‘met a number of advisers recently over a role to review the business, but Hawkpoint is chief executive Duncan Painter’s preferred choice”.

A source told the paper that selling Emap’s trade magazine business, Emap Inform (which includes titles such as Broadcast and Retail Week), was the ‘favoured option to reinvigorate the business, as trade titles and their award ceremonies have suffered badly during the downturn”.

It adds:

An industry source said the sale of Inform was likely to take place later this year, though other figures in the media sector struggled to see who would buy business-to-business magazines in the current environment.

Few think that Inform, which also owns award-winning magazines such as Retail Week and Construction News, would be able to fetch much more than £100m.

This would be considered something of a disappointment given that Apax and GMG paid £1bn for Emap only four years ago. However, both companies have had to write-down the value of their investments since that deal was struck.

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