Saveur Publisher Sells ‘Major’ Stake to $2.5B European Media Co.

saveur_sm.gifIn quietly important news, World Publications, the Winter Park, Florida-based publisher of Saveur, Spa and Islands among other titles, sold a “major stake” to Stockholm-based Bonnier Magazine Group, who you haven’t heard of because this is their “first foray into the U.S. magazine field.”

Now, before you get yourself all Gruner + Jahr II — remember, that big German publishing conglomerate that sold its U.S.-based business to Meredith and Mansueto Ventures last year, bailing on the states — we point you to this part of the press release:

The deal provides World with the backing to fuel an aggressive growth plan that includes new acquisitions, brand extensions and growth of existing magazines. Revenue is targeted to reach $500 million over the next decade.

On second thought, feel free.

The full release:


saveur_sale.jpgWorld Publications Partners with $2.5 Billion European Media Group Bonnier

New York, NY — World Publications CEO Terry Snow announced today a partnership with the Bonnier Magazine Group that positions World to become a substantial player in the U.S. publishing market. World, a leader in special-interest publications and related media products, has sold a major stake to Bonnier, a family-owned, Swedish-based media group that is comprised of newspapers, magazines, books and entertainment properties. This is Bonnier’s first major foray into the U.S. magazine field.

The deal provides World with the backing to fuel an aggressive growth plan that includes new acquisitions, brand extensions and growth of existing magazines. Revenue is targeted to reach $500 million over the next decade.

Bonnier’s partnership replaces private equity firm Boston Ventures’ minority investment in World. “They have been an excellent investment for us. We expect that this new partnership with Bonnier will further accelerate World’s growth,” commented Elizabeth Granville-Smith, a Managing Director at Boston Ventures. “Boston Ventures’ support and backing has enabled us to more than double the size of our company,” says Snow, who founded World in 1978. “We now have a strategic partner in Bonnier to take us to the next level in publishing.”

Bonnier (www.bonnier.com) is a 200-year-old company with approximately $2.5 billion in annual revenue. Based in Stockholm, Bonnier has operations in more than 20 countries, including magazine divisions in Denmark, Norway, Sweden, Finland and Spain. Some of its best-known titles are Illustreret Videnskab, a popular science magazine; I Form, a health-and-fitness title; and Bo Bedre, a home-and-garden monthly.

Jonas Bonnier, Executive Vice President of Bonnier AB and President of Bonnier Magazine Group, shares Snow’s enthusiasm. “We have a strong position in Europe and have been looking for an opportunity to establish a presence in the U.S. market. World Publications is an optimal partner and provides a fantastic platform for future growth,” Bonnier says. “The high quality of the magazines, the growth opportunities in the U.S. and the significant synergy potential were instrumental to this decision.”

The agreement includes the opportunity for Bonnier Magazine Group to increase its ownership stake in World over time.

World’s magazines have won numerous awards, including the National Magazine Award for General Excellence. Headquartered in Winter Park, Florida, with offices in New York City, Santa Barbara, California, and Newport, Rhode Island, the company specializes in travel and luxury lifestyle titles. World’s market-leading magazines include Saveur, Spa, Islands, Garden Design and Caribbean Travel & Life.