Paramount Completes $1.62 Billion Sale of Simon & Schuster, Making It the Only Independent Major Trade Publisher
Paramount, the renowned entertainment company, has finalized the $1.62 billion sale of book publisher Simon & Schuster to leading investment firm KKR. The landmark all-cash transaction has transformed Simon & Schuster into a stand-alone private company while establishing it as the sole independent major trade publisher in the industry.
This significant development comes after a substantial setback faced by Simon & Schuster last year when a judge ruled against its planned acquisition by Penguin Random House, citing concerns related to monopoly. The $2.2 billion deal with Penguin Random House was officially called off, with Paramount securing a $200 million breakup fee.
Despite Paramount’s challenges in the linear TV and motion picture sectors, the company continues to prioritize its profitability in the streaming market. Paramount recently rebranded itself following the merger of Viacom and CBS, and as part of its efforts to streamline costs and reduce debt, the sale of Simon & Schuster was pursued.
The deal has been hailed as beneficial for both Simon & Schuster and Paramount. Simon & Schuster’s CEO, Jonathan Karp, will continue to spearhead the company, while KKR’s extensive resources are expected to strengthen Simon & Schuster’s position in the publishing industry and enable it to be more dynamic.
Paramount’s CEO, Bob Bakish, believes this outcome is ideal for both parties involved. He stated, “The sale of Simon & Schuster to KKR marks a new chapter in Simon & Schuster’s rich history. We are confident that KKR’s resources and expertise will contribute to the continued success and growth of this beloved publishing house.”
Jonathan Karp echoed the sentiment, expressing his excitement about the partnership with KKR. He emphasized that Simon & Schuster is well-positioned to seize new opportunities and deliver captivating books to readers worldwide, thanks to KKR’s support.
Ted Oberwager, a partner at KKR, also expressed optimism for the future of Simon & Schuster, stating, “We believe Simon & Schuster is in a strong position to capture new opportunities and deliver engaging books to readers worldwide.”
With this transformative sale, Simon & Schuster enters a new era of independence and innovation, setting the stage for continued success in the publishing industry.
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