VNU buys 35% of publisher Independent Media

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HAARLEM -- Dutch international publishing and information group VNU said it will acquire 35% of the equity of Independent Media, which it described as the largest publisher of consumer magazines in Russia.

Under a preliminary agreement announced Dec. 2, the transaction would be effective Jan. 1. Terms were not disclosed.

VNU said Independent Media publishes seven consumer magazines, among them the Russian editions of Cosmopolitan, Good Housekeeping and Marie Claire; three newspapers, including The Moscow Times; and various financial services and publications, such as Capital Markets Russia. Independent Media posted 1996 revenues of $40 million and employs 500 people, VNU said.

VNU's exisiting holdings in Eastern Europe include its Mona subsidiary in the Czech Republic and Erasmus Press in Hungary. VNU said its combination with Independent Media will create a platform for new publishing acitivites in Russia and Ukraine.

Copyright December 1997, Crain Communications Inc.

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