Edouard de Rothschild pursues Liberation

29th November 2004, Comments 0 comments

PARIS, Nov 29 (AFP) - French businessman Edouard de Rothschild is seeking a major stake in the centre-left daily Liberation to make it the centrepiece of a diversified press group, he said in an interview published on Monday.

PARIS, Nov 29 (AFP) - French businessman Edouard de Rothschild is seeking a major stake in the centre-left daily Liberation to make it the centrepiece of a diversified press group, he said in an interview published on Monday.

Rothschild, president of France Galop, which organises horse races, told the conservative daily Le Figaro he would preserve Liberation's independence.

He told Le Figaro that "Liberation has all the qualities needed to be the driving force for the diversified press group that I want to build".

Though he declined to specify how much he was willing to invest, Rothschild said: "It is common knowledge that Liberation is looking for a investment to the order of EUR 20 million (USD 27 million)."

According to the financial daily La Tribune, Rothschild would like to hold between 30-35 percent of the newspaper's capital.

The Civil Society of Liberation Personnel, the daily's main shareholder at present, said it was pleased that a second potential investor had come forward in addition to French tycoon Vincent Bollore, with whom the CSLP was already in talks.

It promised to "see what it (the offer) is worth", adding that for the moment many points remained in suspension.

Rothschild told Le Figaro that he wanted to provide Liberation with the means to develop, including "relaunching distribution, industrial alliances with other national supports to optimise costs, and creating periodic supplements and cultural goods".

The French newspaper industry in a period of consolidation in response to financial and circulation problems. The struggling Liberation is considered an influential national publication.

It was founded three decades ago by the current editor-in-chief, Serge July, with support from the philosopher Jean-Paul Sartre.

© AFP

Subject: French News

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