Lagardere makes 1.8 bln euro gain from EADS stake sale

PARIS, April 15 Mon Apr 15, 2013 2:59am EDT

PARIS, April 15 (Reuters) - French media group Lagardere said on Monday it had made a net capital gain of 1.8 billion euros ($2.36 billion) on the sale of its 7.4 percent stake in Airbus parent EADS, part of an overhaul in the ownership of the aerospace group.

Lagardere, whose EADS stake stemmed from a holding in Aerospatiale-Matra folded in the European group in 2000, said in a statement it aimed to increase its exposure to certain activities which could result in "targeted acquisitions."

Sectors in which the group wished to expand included travel retail, digital and rights management.

The media group, which owns magazines such as Elle and Paris Match, also said proceeds from the EADS stake sale would lead to an exceptional dividend to be decided in the coming weeks before the group's annual shareholder meeting on May 3.

($1 = 0.7635 euros) (Reporting by Astrid Wendlandt. Editing by Jane Merriman)