Bauer Media has approached Seven West Media about buying Pacific Magazines, according to The Australian.
The possible merger between Bauer and Pacific Magazines could help the flailing publishers fight back against declining advertising revenues and the force of social networks.
The news follows Nick Chan’s appointment to CEO at Bauer. Chan ran Pacific Magazines for 10 years until 2013, so he is now familiar with both businesses and the struggles they face.
AdNews understands Chan was brought on to undertake significant cost-cutting measures, which have so far included selling off five of its adventure magazines. Bauer has had a tumultuous year, also closing women’s magazine Cleo and a slew of senior executives exiting the business.
Pacific Magazines is undergoing the same cost cutting measures, with its new CEO Gereurd Roberts selling off K-Zone and Total Girl. Earlier in the year, former CEO Peter Zavecz sold off Prevention Magazine and Your Garden.
Industry sources believe Chan has only “just begun” the transformation at Bauer, but to remain competitive in the digital economy Bauer must actively pursue acquisitions in the next year.
It is understood the talks between the German-owned Bauer and Seven have not advanced at this stage.
If a merger was to occur between Pacific Magazines and Bauer, the deal would create a dominant magazine publisher spanning Bauer’s Women’s Day, Cosmopolitan and Australian Women’s Weekly, and Pacific Magazines Better Home and Gardens, Marie Claire and New Idea.
Pacific Magazines declined to comment. Bauer "doesn't comment on speculation".
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