Independent News & Media, the Dublin-headquartered publishing and radio conglomerate chaired by former Irish rugby international and Heinz boss Tony O’Reilly, is poised to seize Australia’s largest newspaper group, Fairfax Holdings.

The vehicle for the takeover deal, estimated at £800 million, is Australian Provincial Newspapers in which IN&M holds a controlling 41% stake.

Fairfax, whose properties include the Sydney Morning Herald, fell prey to takeover in mid July when media mogul Kerry Packer sold his stake after being denied regulatory approval for a fullscale bid.

IN&M publishes over 160 newspaper and magazine titles across three continents, including its flagship UK Independent titles. It also has interests in outdoor advertising, broadcasting, multi-channel TV and the internet.

News source: CampaignLive (UK)