25 November 2003
BONN – Germany’s cartel office Tuesday approved the takeover by Random House, the world’s biggest publisher, of the publishing company Wilhelm Heyne Verlag.
Random House, owned by media giant Bertelsmann, had originally wanted to take the entire Ullstein Heyne List group from the publishers Axel Springer AG.
But after cartel authorities in May blocked what would have been the biggest merger in the German book trade, Random House decided to focus on only part of the operation.
The cartel office said the deal gave Bertelsmann a stronger market position without leading to a position of domination. It would remain under a 30 percent share of the market for German-language information and entertainment paperbacks.
Random House chief executive Joerg Pfuhl said Heyne Verlag would retain its independence within the publishing group.
Subject: German news