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Finland's Sanoma sells SBS stake to Dutch tycoon De Mol, lifts outlook
April 10, 2017 / 6:04 AM / 8 months ago

Finland's Sanoma sells SBS stake to Dutch tycoon De Mol, lifts outlook

HELSINKI, April 10 (Reuters) - Finnish media company Sanoma said on Monday it will sell its stake in Dutch broadcaster SBS to Talpa, the media production company of Dutch media tycoon John De Mol.

Sanoma, which already owns a stable of Dutch print titles, will receive 237 million euros ($250.98 million) for its 67 percent SBS stake and full ownership of the television guide business Veronica Uitgeverij.

Privately-owned Sanoma and De Mol bought the broadcaster for just over one billion euros in 2011, with De Mol taking a 33 percent stake and Sanoma buying the rest. Far smaller than rival broadcaster RTL, it has struggled to build up a viewer base.

“The SBS divestment allows us to accelerate the deleveraging of our balance sheet and provides much more financial and strategic flexibility to grow our stronghold businesses”, Sanoma CEO Susan Duinhoven said in a statement.

Sanoma lifted its full-year outlook for 2017 following the deal, saying its operating profit margin will be above 10 percent for the full year, compared with previous guidance of margin around 10 percent. ($1 = 0.9443 euros) (Reporting by Tuomas Forsell; Editing by Kim Coghill)

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