September 6, 2017 / 11:16 AM / 3 months ago

Spain's Prisa in talks over Santillana sale with Rhone Capital

MADRID, Sept 6 (Reuters) - Spanish media company Prisa said on Wednesday it was in talks over the possible sale its Santillana publishing group with U.S. private equity company Rhone Capital.

However, Prisa said in a statement to the Spanish stock market regulator it had not made a decision on any deal after having held talks with other parties.

Shares in Prisa were up around 6 percent at 1041 GMT, while Spain’s leading index Ibex-35 was down 0.44 percent.

Online newspaper El Confidencial said on Wednesday Rhone Capital was in negotiations to submit an offer of around 1.4 billion euros ($1.7 billion) for the 75 percent stake Prisa holds in Santillana.

In March, Reuters reported Prisa had received three bids from investment firms for Santillana, including one from Rhone Capital.

Some sources, however, said then that the preliminary bids, all in a range of 1.2-1.3 billion euros ($1.3-$1.4 billion), were insufficient for Prisa, which hoped to raise at least 1.5 billion euros to repay debt and prop up its troubled finances.

In May, Prisa ended up rejecting binding offers for Santillana as the offers were too low.

$1 = 0.8374 euros Reporting by Jesús Aguado, Andrés González and Blanca Rodriguez; Editing by Mark Potter

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