News Corp Agrees To Buy Harlequin, Publisher Of Fiction For Women

The mostly publishing company that split from Fox last year will pay $455M in Canadian dollars (about $415M U.S.) for the Toronto-based specialist in romance novels. About 99% of HarperCollins‘ books are in English, so with more than 1,300 authors and reach into more than 100 global markets, Harlequin is eyed to provide a boost for News Corp. The deal “is expected to provide an immediate lift to earnings,” News Corp CEO Robert Thomson says. He calls this “a significant step in our strategy to establish a network of digital properties in the growth regions of the world.” Harlequin will remain a distinct brand at HarperCollins and give it “an immediate foothold in 11 new countries from which we can expand into dozens of foreign languages for authors who choose to work with us globally,” the publishing unit’s CEO Brian Murray says. The deal is expected to close in Q3 following approval by shareholders of Harlequin’s parent company, Torstar Corp. It reported that Harlequin generated C$398M ($363M U.S.) in revenues last year with C$56M ($51M U.S.) in cash flow using international accounting rules, which differ from those in the U.S.

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