Penguin and Random House first announced their plans to merge last October, thus creating a colossal book publisher. Well, that deal has been given yet another big seal of approval with MOFCOM, the Chinese competition authority, giving the deal the go-ahead without conditions.
Today’s news follows on from the US Department of Justice greenlighting the deal back in February, which was a big step towards completing the merger. Australia followed suit, as did New Zealand, South Africa and then Europe in early April.
Random House’s parent company – German mass media corporation Bertelsmann – and Pearson (Penguin’s parent company) confirmed the news earlier today, but the overall deal isn’t yet finalized, as it has yet to be ratified by a number of other bodies.
Indeed, while the China hurdle is a significant step forward, there still remains India, Spain and a number of Latin American countries where Penguin and Random House operate. So it could be another few months yet before the deal is finally signed, sealed and delivered.
Assuming the merger is seen through to completion, Bertelsmann will own a majority share in the newly formed ‘Penguin Random House’ with 53%, while Pearson will own the remaining 47%.