Hengeler Mueller advises Advent International on sale of majority of Thalia

11. July 2016

A consortium led by the Herder family, traditional German publisher, acquires the majority of the bookselling group Thalia from the joint holding company of Advent International and the family Kreke. The other divisions of the former Douglas retail group, namely perfumeries (Douglas), confectionery (Hussel), jewelry (Christ) and fashion (Appelrath-Cüpper) had been sold to new owners before. The holding had acquired Thalia as part of the former Douglas Holding AG in 2012. The Kreke family remains minority shareholder in Thalia. The parties agreed not to disclose the value of the transaction.

With more than 280 bookshops in Germany, Austria, and Switzerland, Thalia is the market leader in the retail bookselling market in the German-speaking area. Further, the company operates on cross-channel sales: the products are distributed via classical bookshops as well as in the online shop. The partners offer their customers over one million eBooks, being one of the largest German-speaking eBook ranges. Thalia was founded in the building of the Thalia Theater in Hamburg in 1919.

Hengeler Mueller advised Advent International on this transaction. The team includes partners Daniel Wiegand, Hans-Jörg Ziegenhain (both M&A, Munich), Thorsten Maeger (Antitrust, Düsseldorf), Matthias Scheifele (Tax), Nikolaus Vieten (Financing) (both Frankfurt) as well as associates Jakub Lorys, Georg Heiß, Benedikt Läufer, Achim Spengler, (all M&A, Munich) and Peter Wehner (Employment, Frankfurt). The team around Hans-Jörg Ziegenhain and Daniel Wiegand had also advised Advent on the sale of Douglas perfumeries to CVC in 2015.