Tuesday, February 28, 2006

Au revoir les Francais

Nothing seems to make an Emap investor happier than getting out of foreign markets. Its shares were up more than 5% this morning after Emap said it was finally pulling out of France.

Something about Emap and international expansion has never quite panned out. All Emap can seem to do overseas is lose large amounts of cash.

Emap made a foray into the US when it bought Petersen in 1998 for £720m, only to sell it two years later at a huge loss to Primedia. The deal is reported to have cost the company £545m.

Now it's pulling out of France, which has always been a problem. Last year, Emap saw profits in France fall 50%.

Despite the fall, Emap chief Tom Moloney was still bullish last year and was talking about the possibility of launching new titles in France, but Emap has simply not been able to make it work in France.

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