8 April 2013

EC approves Penguin / Random House merger

On 5 April, the European Commission unconditionally approved the creation of Penguin Random House, a joint venture combining parts of the publishing businesses of Bertelsmann and Pearson. The EC found that, while the combined business would become the largest English-language publisher in the EEA, it would continue to face strong competition from several large competitors as well as numerous smaller and medium sized publishers. In its assessment, the Commission also took into account the fact that publishers faced an increasingly concentrated retail customer base, in relation to both print and digital book sales. RBB Economics advised Bertelsmann and Pearson throughout the investigation, working alongside Slaughter and May and Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer.

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