Prisa, Imagina break off merger talks

Iñaki Ferreras

Spain's two main media groups, Sogecable's Prisa and Mediapro's Imagina, have broken off conversations for a possible merger - at least for the moment.

After two delays and multiple concessions on both sides the breaking point came over power sharing. While this point was reported to have been sorted out some weeks ago, this wasn't in the end the case.

Putting aside the economic valuations of both groups, from the very first they agreed an even share-out of the executive posts of the merged company. But Prisa seems to have changed its mind over the last few days, demanding control of the future holding company.

From now on the companies will be free to negotiate with other national broadcasters for a possible merger, as the new law approved last May allows. This law only prohibits a hypothetical merger between Grupo Planeta's Antena 3 and Mediaset's Telecinco.

It is precisely these two channels which have already neared Imagina to start conversations if Imagina did not close the agreement with Prisa-Sogecable. To be continued...