BBC to sell parts of magazine portfolio

Titles such as Lonely Planet and Radio Times are set to be sold.

BBC Worldwide - the commercial subsidiary of the public broadcaster - is to go ahead with selling at least parts of its profitable magazine business, reports the Daily Telegraph.

The company, which brings out titles such as Lonely Planet, Radio Times and Olive, has received approval from the BBC trust to proceed with the sale, after months of regulatory procedure.

BBC Worldwide will send out an information memorandum in the coming few days to interested potential buyers detailing a proposal for a long-term publishing partnership.

It intends to bring in a partner to invest in its magazine portfolio of about 34 titles, which is currently not a business priority for BBC Worldwide, while simultaneously maintaining a publishing presence. Around 30 bidders are said to have expressed their interest in the deal.

Details of the nature of transaction remain unclear at this point but it is likely that a bidder will be acquiring a majority equity stake in the BBC's magazine interests which have been valued at around £180m.