‘Le Monde’ Boards Set to Pick New Owner

By: The Associated Press

The editorial and management board for France’s Le Monde newspaper was meeting Monday to rule on a bidder for a controlling stake in the renowned but financially struggling daily.

A leading bidder, a group that includes the owner of Spain’s El Pais, said hours before the meeting that it would pull out.

The journalists’ committee that oversees strategic choices overwhelmingly backs a business trio formed by Internet billionaire Xavier Niel, Lazard banker Matthieu Pigasse and Pierre Berge, an arts patron and late designer Yves Saint-Laurent’s longtime partner.

The centre-left Le Monde says it needs help to pay off debts and survive punishing times in the media industry and is looking for an estimated euro100 million (US$124 million) in capital increase.

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