News Corp. owner of HarperCollins Publishers, has expressed interest to CBS Corp. about acquiring its Simon & Schuster book business, according to people familiar with the talks.
The people described the talks as preliminary and cautioned that a deal isn’t imminent. News Corp. publishes The Wall Street Journal.
News Corp. is in the process of splitting into two listed companies, one containing its entertainment assets such as Twentieth Century Fox film studio and Fox News cable channel, the other housing publishing assets including the Journal and HarperCollins. While HarperCollins is relatively small in the scheme of the current company, it could account for more than a fifth of the new publishing company’s operating income for the fiscal year ending in June 2013, Nomura Securities estimates.
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Earlier today, News Corp. acquired another media company, The Yes Network. This cable/satellite network provides local coverage of the New York Yankees and other NYC area sports.