* Bertelsmann holds 92.3 pct of RTL voting rights
* Intends to retain a stake of about 75 pct
* RTL Group current market value is 11.7 billion euros
FRANKFURT, Jan 31 Bertelsmann
is considering a reduction in its stake in Europe's
largest broadcasting group, RTL Group, to raise money
for an overhaul of its business to catch up with fast changing
Bertelsmann, which currently holds 92.3 per cent of the
voting rights in RTL said on Thursday it was thinking of
shrinking its shareholding in RTL through a capital market
transaction but would retain about 75 percent.
"Bertelsmann is currently considering various options to
finance its growth ambitions," Bertelsmann's Chief Executive
Thomas Rabe said in a statement.
"Bertelsmann would retain a significant majority stake of
around 75 percent of RTL Group," he added.
Bertelsmann is in the middle of an overhaul, trying to grow
faster by becoming more digital and international.
Europe's biggest media group in October agreed with
Britain's Pearson to merge their publishers Penguin and
Random House, aiming to gain the upper hand in their
relationship with Amazon and Apple, the
leaders in the ebook revolution.
Last year Bertelsmann changed its legal form from a joint
stock company to one allowing it to list as a company controlled
by a family holding.
Luxembourg listed RTL Group currently has a market
capitalisation of 11.7 billion euros ($15.9 billion), according
to Thomson Reuters data.
The group said in a separate statement that it "understands
that a final decision will depend on a number of conditions
precedent, including a favourable capital market environment."
"RTL Group will review options to increase the efficiency of
its capital structure, such as a potential payment of an
extraordinary dividend," it added.
Bertelsmann also said on Thursday its 2012 revenue increased
5 percent to around 16 billion euros, while earnings before
interest and taxes (EBIT), excluding special items was flat at
1.7 billion euros.