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Metro sells Greek business due to crisis

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16:00 CEST+02:00
Swedish free newspaper publisher, Metro International has announced the sale of its Greek arm due to the parlous economic situation in the country, which has hit advertising revenues.

"The Greek (advertising) market has been affected by some time and was hard-hit by the macroeconomic environment, its therefore clear that (the sale of the Greek division) was influenced by the crisis," investor relations director Linda Fors told AFP.

Metro International said in a statement it was selling Metro Greece to Voisins Limited, who will continue publishing the newspaper as part of a franchise agreement.

It added the transaction would cost it €1.8 million ($2.2 million) because of transaction fees billed by the mediating bank.

Since the beginning of the global economic crisis, which sent advertising sales worldwide plunging, Metro has sought to center its activity on its main northern European markets.

It shut down its Spanish edition and has sold its US, Italian and Portuguese divisions.

Metro is published in 19 countries and the company estimates it has some 17 million daily readers.

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