PPF Group, an investment company whose majority shareholder is the Czech billionaire Petr Kellner, has agreed to buy a 95 per cent stake in Bulgarian media group Nova Broadcasting from the Swedish Modern Times Group (MTG). The deal, which values the Nova business at an enterprise value of 185 million euros, was confirmed on February 20. Closing is subject to regulatory approvals and expected to take place during the first half of 2018.
Jørgen Madsen Lindemann, MTG president and CEO (above): “We have built Nova into Bulgaria’s number one commercial media group with 33% commercial share of viewing, and ownership of some of the country’s top digital brands. Under the excellent leadership of Didier Stoessel and his management team, Nova has evolved very rapidly into the market leading digital entertainment group, and I would like to thank all those that have made this possible.”
“MTG’s investments are focused on our Nordic Entertainment, Studios and global digital entertainment verticals,” continued Mr Lindemann, “which is why we have found a new home for our Bulgarian employees with a partner that will invest in Nova’s future. We wish Didier and the whole Nova team every continued success. This will bring to a close the disposal of our international entertainment operations and leaves MTG as a more focused group, which is in line with our previously stated strategy.”
PPF Group invests into multiple market segments such as banking and financial services, telecommunications, real estate and biotechnology. PPF’s reach spans from Europe to Russia, the US and across Asia. PPF Group owns assets of almost 35 billion euros (as at 30 June 2017).
Nova is Bulgaria’s largest commercial media group and comprises seven TV channels and 19 online businesses that together generated 99.44 million euros in sales and 19.56 million euros in operating income (EBIT) for the full year 2017.