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Strong Competition in a tight Finnish magazine market leads to hostile takeovers

Tuesday, 17 April 2012
As the Finnish magazine market gets more competitive, hostile takeovers are being seen as a strategy to stay ahead of others.

This is why Finland's third-largest magazine publisher is seeking a bigger slice of a shrinking pie by buying up three popular titles. Meanwhile Alma Media is cutting staff at many provincial newspapers.

A-lehdet is buying the Finnish and Estonian operations of Swedish publisher Forma. Its Finnish magazines include Kotivinkki, Talo&Koti and Trendi, which are all primarily aimed at female readers.

Forma has 45 employees in Finland and 17 in Estonia. There, the company publishes corresponding titles such as Kodu & Aed and Meie Kodu.
A-lehdet's flagship magazine Apu was long one of Finland's most popular magazines but has been rapidly losing readership. The firm also publishes titles such as Avotakka, Demi, Soundi and Tuulilasi.

The company also owns Image Kustannus, which produces the more upmarket titles Image, Mondo and Viini. Meanwhile A-lehdet's custom publishing division is responsible for more two dozen corporate publications including the K retail chain's Pirkka. The latter claims a readership of some 2.8 million, making it the nation's biggest magazine.
Finland's largest magazine publishers are Sanoma and Otava, which owns Yhtyneet Kuvalehdet.

Also on Monday, the communications group Alma Media said it will significantly cut staff at its regional and local newspapers.
The firm will launch negotiations next week aimed at reducing its current roster of more than 800 employees by up to 135 people.
The redundancies will affect Alma Aluemedia, which publishes the flagship Tampere daily Aamulehti as well as smaller papers such as Satakunnan Kansa, Lapin Kansa, Pohjolan Sanomat and Kainuun Sanomat.
News source Yle Finland

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