The US Department of Justice has given the go-ahead to media companies Pearson Plc (LON:PSON) and Bertelsmann AG (FRA:BTG4) to merge their respective English language publishing businesses Penguin Group and Random House Group Ltd, the parties announced.
The institution has closed its investigation into the planned tie-up without conditions. The transaction, however, is still pending clearance by the European Commission (EC), the Canadian Competition Bureau and various other antitrust authorities around the globe.
As unveiled in late October 2012, UK-based Pearson and Germany’s Bertelsmann agreed to form a joint venture called Penguin Random House that would hold the two combined publishers. Bertelsmann will have a 53% stake in the JV, while its partner will take the rest.
The pair continue to anticipate the closing of the transaction to occur in the second half of the year.
Penguin Random House will comprise all of the two entities’ publishing units in the US, Canada, the UK, Australia, New Zealand, India and South Africa. In addition, it will include Penguin’s activities in China and Random House’s publishers in Spain and Latin America.