SUCCESSFUL SALE OF LANGENSCHEIDT PUBLISHING PROGRAM TO PONS (KLETT PUBLISHING GROUP)
Munich, 06 May 2019. PONS GmbH has acquired the publishing rights of Langenscheidt GmbH & Co. KG and Langenscheidt Digital GmbH & Co. KG. The titles and products will be integrated in the current publishing program of PONS. The Langenscheidt brand, thus, remains in the market.
Through the sale of its publishing program to PONS, the continuing existence of the Langenscheidt brand is secured. PONS has been the other leading publishing house for language learning, translation, and dictionaries, besides Langenscheidt, for decades. Over the last years, PONS, just like Langenscheidt, has invested heavily in the development of innovative and successful new products such has pictured dictionaries and apps. The acquisition of the Langenscheidt titles allows PONS to act even stronger in the market. Over the last 15 years the market size for printed dictionaries has decreased by approximately 70 percent as the market moved online.
Andreas Mundt, president of the German Federal Cartel Office comments on the merger*: “As a consequence of the acquisition, the combined enterprises will have a big market share both in printed dictionaries and language learning products. Though, the merger still was to be approved as the concerned markets are minor markets (“Bagatellmarkt”) with low overall revenues. Further, a high competition is observable for the digital offerings. Many consumers have predominantly moved to online offerings to search for translations or to learn languages.”
According to the minor market clause (“Bagatellmarktklausel”) in the German Act Against Restraints of Competition, a merger cannot be prohibited if the concerned domestic market had overall revenues of less than EUR 15m within in the last calendar year.
ACXIT Capital Partners was exclusively mandated by Günther Holding S.E., the previous owner of Langenscheidt, as exclusive M&A advisor and was responsible for conducting the M&A process.
About Klett Publishing Group
PONS GmbH is a company of the Stuttgart-based Klett Group. The Klett Group is a leading education company in Europe, active in more than 16 countries, with more than 5,000 employees and revenues of more than EUR 600 million (2017). Its offering contains traditional and modern education products for coursework in school and learning out of school as well as technical literature and fine literature. Moreover, Klett Group is running numerous education facilities such as day care centers, schools, distance learning schools, and higher education institutions.
About ACXIT Capital Partners
ACXIT Capital Partners is a leading independent corporate finance and investment advisory firm for mid-market clients and entrepreneurs in Europe and beyond. Since 1998, ACXIT offers its clients comprehensive corporate finance advisory services including M&A and capital markets advisory as well as restructuring, equity/debt and strategic advisory. As an independent, privately owned firm we maintain offices and representations in Frankfurt, Berlin, Munich, Leipzig, Zurich, Hong Kong and New York, as well as strong alliances in France and India.
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* Source: German Federal Cartel Office, Press Release, 26 April 2019