RTL Croatia owner PPF takes 9% stake in ProSiebenSat.1

RTL Croatia owner PPF Group has acquired a 9.1% stake in German media company ProSiebenSat.1.

The deal makes the Czech company ProSiebenSat.1’s second largest shareholder behind Silvio Berlusconi’s MediaForEurope, which owns a 29.9% stake.

PPF said it is “convinced that ProSieben’s digital transformation will create value for all shareholders. PPF looks forward to working with ProSieben’s management and board of directors on ProSieben’s digital transformation.”

PPF is an active investor in the TMT space, most notably through its subsidiary Central European Media Enterprises (CME), which operates several television and online media companies in Central and Southeastern Europe.

Its last major media acquisition in Europe came in early 2022 when it took control of RTL Croatia.

ProSiebenSat.1 owns linear and digital properties in Germany, and recently struck a deal to buy Warner Bros. Discovery out of their joint-venture streaming platform Joyn.

The German media giant has been the subject of increased attention since Berlusconi’s MFE increased its stake to 29.9%. MFE has recently merged its Italian and Spanish operations and is seeking to building an enlarged pan-European business. As such, the company’s increased stake in ProSiebenSat1 is seen as a possible precursor to a full bid for control.

Against that backdrop, PPF which owns a broad range of assets including CME, Skoda, Yettel Hungary and O2 Czech Republic, might emerge as an alternative bidder. Or it might simply be content to remain as a prominent number two.

A ProSiebenSat1 spokesperson said that the company welcomed the fact that PPF regards the business as an attractive investment. Shares rose by just under 1%.

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