Penguin Random House has asked for permission from the foreign investment promotion board to acquire the stakes owned by its Indian partner and plans to invest Rs 55 crore to buy out the stakes. Note that, Ananda Publishers, part of Ananda Bazaar Patrika Group, owns 45% stake in Penguin Books India.
This comes after ABP Group, which publishes newspaper dailies and holds Ananda Publishers, sold its fortnighyly business magazine Businessworld to Anurag batra, owner of Exchange4media and investor Vikram Jhunjhunwala. It appears that ABP Group is in hurry to exit some of its businesses. While Businessworld appeared to be under loss, it’s not clear why ABP Group plans to sell its stake in Penguin House India.
After the deal, Penguin Random House will reportedly own 55% stake in Penguin India, while remaining will be owned by Penguin Random House Singapore. This appears to be consolidating its Asia operations under one subsidiary. This year in July, Penguin merged its operations with Germany based Bertelsmann Random House.
Founded in 1985, Penguin India publishes business books under its portfolio, and other imprints under Allen Lane, Hamish Hamilton, Metro Reads, among others. In June 2013, it launched e-singles catalog, digital only reads available for download through Flipkart and Google Books. In February 2013, It launched Partridge, a self publishing imprint in partnership with Author Solutions, which it had acquired in July 2012.