Hachette Will Not Be Acquiring Perseus Book Group

Remember the report that Hachette was buying Perseus Books and selling off the distribution part of the company to Ingram? Well, that deal just imploded and Hachette backed out.

According to The Wall Street Journal the deal just got too complicated to close and Hachette bailed out. Apparently selling the print and digital distribution business to Ingram Content Group turned into a deal killer as the parties couldn't reach agreement on all the terms. The deal was originally supposed to close at the end of July.

Perseus CEO David Steinberger was supposed to leave the company after the acquisition, but told the WSJ that he's staying and is energized for the future. He says financially the company is doing great. Perseus was never for sale in the first place, the deal only happened because Hachette came calling with a lucrative offer. No one will say officially, but the rumors say that the problems arose when Hachette started negotiating with Ingram. Reportedly the parties could not agree on the sale price of the distribution unit, so the whole deal fell apart.

We have to wonder why Hachette made it so complicated. Why not buy all of Persues' imprints and the distribution business, then sell the distribution part later? A two way merger is always easier to close than one with three parties at the table.

Posted on August 9, 2014

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