• Kyodo


Columbia Tristar, a U.S. movie unit owned by Sony Corp., will probably join a consortium that has reached a basic agreement to buy part of collapsed KirchMedia GmbH & Co., the German media firm said Wednesday.

The consortium consists of German publisher Heinrich Bauer Verlag and German commercial bank HypoVereinsbank.

KirchMedia withheld the value of the deal, although sources familiar with the negotiations said it would amount to about 2 billion euros (some 240 billion yen).

After details of the sale are finalized, a formal contract will probably be signed in early December.

KirchMedia, a core unit of the failed German media organization Kirch Group, became insolvent April 8 under the weight of heavy investments, including commitments to obtain the rights to air last summer’s World Cup soccer finals cohosted by Japan and South Korea.

KirchMedia is selling two of its three remaining major operations: its broadcasting segment and a division that handles the buying and selling of film rights.

Another segment overseeing the rights to broadcast soccer games has already been sold.

The broadcasting segment covers ProSiebenSat.1 Media AG, a leading German commercial TV station.

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