Emap headquarters

Emap headquarters in London: Publisher is 'looking at a range of options'

Credit: ceridwen/geograph.org.uk - licensed under Creative Commons

Business-to-business publisher Emap is reported to be considering a sale of its magazines and some events, as part of a strategic review led by the company's new chief executive.

The Financial Times reported that the firm, which is owned by the Guardian Media Group (GMG) and private equity firm Apax, is "looking at a range of options [paywall] and the deliberations are at an early stage".

Duncan Painter, who joined Emap from BSkyB last autumn, told the Telegraph: "Since I have arrived I have had at least 20 firms come to visit me.

"At the end of the day, we are owned by private equity investors, so if someone turns up and offers a fortune, sure we would sell it to them."

One option reportedly being considered is that Emap would keep its exhibitions unit and sell its business-to-business publishing division Emap Inform which includes magazines such as Broadcast and Retail Week as well as some conferences.

The FT points to UBM, Haymarket and Reed Elsevier as potential buyers [paywall].

However, Enders analyst Douglas McCabe told the paper: "Any buyer will understand they are buying [print] assets that have fallen significantly [in value] and will fall further.

"How do you disentangle the more profitable manifestations of the brand in the form of live events from the dying print part of it?"

GMG and Apax bought Emap's business-to-business division for £1bn in 2007. The consumer arm was sold to Bauer.

Journalism.co.uk reported last month that Emap was planning to downsize and vacate its central London headquarters.

Apax declined to comment. GMG had not responded to a request for a comment at the time of publication.

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