ProSiebenSat.1 considers 9Live sale

German television group ProSiebenSat.1 wants to sell off subsidiaries to drastically reduce costs and decrease its multi-billion euro debt. To this end, a sale of quiz channel 9Live is being considered, reports German financial newspaper Handelsblatt, quoting industry sources.

“They would like to do this,” quoted a company insider to the newspaper, claiming that intensive internal negotiations are already underway concerning the sale of the profitable thematic channel, but that the current economic climate would make it difficult to find a buyer. “Only risk lovers would consider it an option at the moment.”

The official line at ProSiebenSat.1 denies a disposal of 9Live being on the agenda. “The sale of 9Live is not a consideration,” said a spokesman. He confirmed, however, that a sale of the production subsidiary Berlin Produktion with 370 employees is being examined.

According to industry insiders, ProSiebenSat.1 wants to raise €1 billion through the sale of company assets. The Munich-based company is labouring under the weight of a €3.4 million debt. In December 2008 ProSiebenSat.1 sold its Scandinavian pay-TV division C More to Swedish commercial broadcaster TV4 for around €320 million.