Daily Mail owner close to deal with pension trustees over Rothermere offer

FILE PHOTO: A clock face is seen outside of the London offices of the Daily Mail newspaper in London, Britain, April 28, 2018. REUTERS/Toby Melville/File Photo

(Reuters) -The owner of Britain’s Daily Mail said on Tuesday it was close to agreeing to a deal with its pension trustees that would see the publisher’s founding family pay them roughly 400 million pounds ($546 million) and clear the way for a buyout of the company.

In July, the Rothermere family, which is the leading investor of Daily Mail and General Trust (DMGT), laid out an 810-million-pound plan to buy DMGT.

That plan was contingent on the sale of DMGT’s insurance risk business, listing of partly owned online car seller Cazoo and an agreement with the trustees.

The news on the possible deal with DMGT’s pension trustees, first reported by Sky News on Monday, comes after years of overhaul at the London-listed company as it built focus on its mainstay news business and beat out competition.

DMGT said on Tuesday the possible deal with its pension trustees also includes some other unspecified terms.

Under British takeover rules, the Rothermeres have until Nov. 25 to make a firm offer to buy DMGT via their vehicle Rothermere Continuation Ltd or walk away.

The Daily Mail was first published in 1896 by the ancestors of current DMGT chairman Jonathan Harmsworth, the Viscount Rothermere. The group also publishes the Daily Mail tabloid, The Mail on Sunday and MailOnline.

($1 = 0.7329 pounds)

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