Penguin and Random House merger approved by Brussels

Pengion and Random House UK logos
Image caption The merger is expected to be completed before the end of this year

The proposed merger of Penguin and Random House has been given the go-ahead by the European Commission.

Brussels said the merged business - which will be the world's largest book publisher - would not raise competition concerns, because it will "face several strong competitors".

Random House's German parent firm, Bertelsmann, will own 53% of the new venture, with Pearson, Penguin's owner, controlling the remaining 47%.

The merger was announced last October.

US competition authorities had already cleared the deal in February.

The merger is expected to be completed in the second half of this year, and the business will simply be called Penguin Random House.

The world's other largest publishing groups are Hachette, HarperCollins, Macmillan and Simon & Schuster.

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