Montreal—It looks like printing giant Quebecor World just got a little bigger. The $6.5 billion commercial printer has signed an agreement to buy the European printing assets of Hachette Filipacchi Medias. The assets include printing and bindery facilities in France, as well as Hachette’s 50% ownership of Helio Charleroi in Belgium; public investment firm Compagnie Nationale a Portefeuille (CNP) will retain its 50% ownership of that facility for the next three years.
The plants in France and Belgium operate long-run gravure presses and print a combination of magazines, catalogs, and retail inserts. The purchase price also includes two bindery and distribution operations in the Paris region, one of which will be operated as a joint venture with Hachette. Both these facilities do finishing work for Hachette and several other publishers.
In addition to buying the printing facilities from Hachette, the deal also involves Quebecor entering into long-term printing contracts with the European publisher. Considering that Hachette publishes 210 magazine titles in 34 countries, the contracts are worth an estimated $400 million (excluding paper). The transaction is subject to necessary regulatory approval.