Friday, February 23, 2007

Deals News: Harcourt, Reed, Riverdeep, Borders, B&N

It was a relatively slow week given all the excitment last week. Thomson are looking for a quick resolution to their Learning disposal; having made everyone wait until mid February for the deal book they now want responses in only a few weeks. It does reflect the fact that they have put some time and preparation into the documents having announced the disposal late last year. Perhaps the same cannot be said for Reed who are looking for a close in July.

In what could be construed as incredibly bad timing Riverdeep's accounting firm Ernst & Young resigned last week because they believed that "professional relationship between us and the company has irretrievably broken down." Too early to tell if this will be significant at all in Riverdeep's acquisition binge but Moody's is suggesting it will review their rating towards the end of March.

Martyn Daniels at the Booksellers Association reminds me of speculation (muted I would suggest) about a merger between B&N and Borders. Personally, nothing seems less likely. I think if B&N were to make any store related acquisition they would buy Chapters in Canada. That is if the government would allow and B&N decide going International would be a good thing.

1 comment:

Eoin Purcell said...

I'd say a Chapters acquisition would be tough going, at least going by what Roy McSkimming, (The Perilous Trade) Consultant to the Canadian book trade has to say. He was in Dublin last weekend for a trade conference and was interesting when talking about the measures the Canadians have taken to protect their indigenous book trade!