VNU, the Dutch parent of Nielsen Media Research and publishers of trade magazines like Adweek, Billboard
and The Hollywood Reporter
Monday announced plans to sell its World Directories
Group to an investment group directed by Ajax Partners Worldwide and Cinven Ltd. for $2.545 million. Financial news service Reuters reported that the figure was in the billions and quoted unnamed
analysts as speculating that the move might be a prelude to new acquisitions, including a potential deal to acquire radio ratings giant Arbitron.
"The transaction allows us to focus on our
high-growth core marketing, media measurement and business information activities," stated Rob van den Bergh, chairman-CEO of VNU.