UBM sells The Publican to William Reed in £1.65m deal

United Business Media has sold its licensed trade titles to rival William Reed in a deal worth up to £1.65m and offloaded its French medical newspaper business for £8.8m.

The business publisher said it sold its licensed portfolio – which comprises The Publican magazine, website and awards event, together with the Theme and Bar Show brands – is for a cash payment of £1.5m and a deferred performance-related consideration of up to £150,000.

UBM bought The Publican for £21m in 2005 as part of a deal which also saw it acquire sister titles Flavour, Pub & Bar, The Official Training Company and Quantum Data as part of the break-up of Croydon-based Quantum Business Media.

UBM said today the transaction would see 14 staff transfer to William Reed, which already publishes a series of hospitality and food and drink retail titles – including the other main pub industry trade title, The Morning Advertiser.

In addition to this disposal, UBM has also sold its French medical newspaper and magazine business in a management buyout led by Gérard Kouchner, the French business’s chief executive.

The business employs 170 staff in Paris and publishes weekly, bi-weekly, monthly and other subscription and controlled circulation titles for the French healthcare professional community.

The terms of the deal see UBM retain a 37.1 per cent stake in the new business. UBM will receive €4.4m (£3.7m) cash as part of the deal and provide vendor finance of €6m (£5.1m) to the buyout team.

UBM also announced today that it had acquired a 60 per cent in Famdent, India’s largest dental exhibition and conference business, and taken full control of India’s largest travel tradeshow SATTE. Further terms of the Indian deals were not disclosed by UBM.

UBM also reported today that it recorded a 4.9 per cent year on year increase in revenue in 2010 despite closing 13 print magazines over the year.

The company, which also publishes the Farmer’s Guardian and Property Week, said it generated revenue of £889.2m last year – an underlying growth of 5.6 per cent year on year.

This growth came despite print revenues declining 13.1 per cent to £144.1m – driven in part by closure of print titles during 2010, the company said.

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