On May 31, 2011, Lagardère SCA announced the closing of the sale of its international magazine business to Hearst Corp., the United States media conglomerate, for approximately $919 million.
The Canadian portion of the deal – involving the acquisition of around 100 magazine titles in 14 countries outside of France as well as digital operations – saw Hearst obtain publishing rights for ELLE Canada and ELLE Québec along with a 49 per cent interest in Canada's Transcontinental Media Inc.'s Les Publications Transcontinental Hachette Inc., the product of a partnership between the Montréal-based commercial printer and Lagardère's Hachette Filipacchi Media. The publishing venture will now operate as Les Publications Transcontinental Hearst Inc. Hearst will pay annual royalties to Lagardère, which is keeping ownership of the ELLE brand across different multimedia platforms.
Blake, Cassels & Graydon LLP acted as Canadian counsel to Lagardère SCA with a team that included Gail Lilley, Geoff Belsher, Philippe Décary Deborah Salzbergerand Emmanuel Sala.
Clifford Chance LLP acted for Hearst with a team that included Kathleen Werner, Benjamin Sibbett, Christopher Roman and Robert Stone, all from the New York office.