Berlusconi Mulls Offer for German Broadcaster

07 November 2006

ROME: Italy's dominant private broadcaster Mediaset is considering making an offer for a controlling stake in Germany's largest commercial broadcaster ProSiebenSat.1 Media.

Mediaset, controlled by erstwhile Italian premier Silvio Berlusconi, is looking to expand abroad as it faces increasing regulatory troubles from a new left-leaning government bent on media reform.

Proseiben, for its part, was pursued last year by German publisher Axel Springer, but the sale was blocked by regulators, fearful of the effect on competition in the advertising market. Berlusconi's bid could face similar hurdles.

Also in the hunt are said to be US private equity firms such as Texas Pacific Group and Blackstone Group, as well as the UK's Apax Partners.

Data sourced from Wall Street Journal Online; additional content by WARC staff