The price for a sale of Reed Business Information, the publisher of Publishers Weekly, Variety, Playthings, Video Business, and over 100 other titles, has dropped to around $1 billion from the expected $2 billion and may kill the sale, according to a Bloomberg report. The decline in the expected price for the unit has been driven by troubled ad markets and financing problems for purchasers (see “Credit Crunch Clouds Reed Mag Unit Sale”).
Parent Reed Elsevier was anxious to complete a sale to avoid a credit rating downgrade.
Two bidders remain, according to the report: Bain Capital, and TPB with DLJ Merchant Banking. Either would slash around $100 million in costs at the unit, including headcount.