Private equity firm Exponent acquires Dennis Publishing

Dennis Publishing, a multi-platform international media group which owns several award-winning brands including flagship title The Week has been acquired by private equity firm Exponent, following a bidding war with the Daily Mail & General Trust.

While the price of the acquisition has not been disclosed, analysts predict that Exponent paid between £150m and £200m, with The Week alone valued at around £100m. Alongside the flagship title, Dennis Publishings other brands are centred on current affairs, technology, automotive and special interest titles, and include MoneyWeek, Viz, Car Buyer and Computer Active.

“Dennis is and will continue to be the most dynamic media company in the UK,” said James Tye, chief executive at Dennis Publishing. “We have grown strongly every year now since 2009 and that growth ambition is absolutely shared by Exponent.

“As partners, Exponent recognise the potential Dennis has and want Dennis to grow in size, reach and stature under their ownership. Its business as usual, with no changes planned. As partners, we share the belief that innovation and ambition are the keys to success and its this share vision that will propel Dennis to its next phase of growth.”

The acquisition of Dennis isnt Exponents first venture into publishing. The equity firm previously owned Immediate Media, which combined Origin Publishing, Magicalia and BBC Magazines, with titles including Radio Times, Top Gear, Good Food and Gardeners World, until selling to Hubert Burda Media in January 2017.

According to the wishes of company founder Felix Dennis estate, the proceeds from the deal will go towards the Heart of England Forest project, an initiative founded by Dennis. The cash will fund the development, planting and maintaining of woodland in Warwickshire, with the aim of creating the largest contiguous broadleaf woodland for public enjoyment that the UK has seen in a century.