“Liberation” bailed out to the tune of 15 million euros by Czech billionaire Daniel Kretinsky

The press title headed by Denis Olivennes hopes to achieve a return to balance in 2026.

The Czech billionaire and boss of CMI (“She», «Marianne"...), Daniel Kretinsky, lends 14 million euros to Release to ensure "the financing of the title until its return to equilibriumin 2026, the independent press company, owner of the daily, announced on Tuesday. In addition to this loan, Daniel Kretinsky, via his foundation, is donating one million euros to the "endowment fund for an independent press(FDPI), majority shareholder of independent press, according to an announcement made internally by the general manager of ReleaseDenis Olivennes.

Poured”in the form of bonds“, the loan must make it possible to cover the losses of the title, loss-making despite strong growth in its sales, while preserving its “independence“, according to the independent press release. The FDPI, to which Patrick Drahi's Altice group sold Release two years ago, "rejoices at the arrival at his side» of a «new quality partner», seeing there «a pledge of confidence in the future of the newspaper", according to the text. Also quoted in the press release, Daniel Kretinsky said to himself “happy to thus participate in the perpetuation of an independent newspaper and essential to the democratic debate".

Return to balance for 2026

Denis Olivennes announced in July that he was looking for 15 million euros for Freed. The return to equilibrium had been postponed from 2023 to 2026, due in particular to slower than expected development in advertising, aggravated by the pandemic. In Tuesday's press release, the leader assures that "Liberation has fully entered the digital subscription revolution» and praises the «strongest increase in circulation of the national daily press“observed”for a year and a half".

According to the CMPA, Release sold more than 93,000 copies daily over the 2021-2022 period, an increase of 11.14% compared to 2020-2021. In 2021, its turnover reached 31.5 million euros, up 10%, and operating losses were reduced to 7.9 million against 12.3 million in 2020.

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