National and regional publisher Trinity Mirror is in talks over a partial merger with Express Newspapers, it has been confirmed.
In a statement to the Stock Exchange this morning, TM said it is in discussions over taking a minority stake in a new company comprising some of Richard Desmond’s Northern & Shell titles.
It is thought that the talks are focused on creating a combined sales operation for the Express and Mirror titles as well as merging some back office functions.
The Trinity Mirror statement reads: “The Board of Trinity Mirror plc notes the recent media speculation and confirms that it is at an early stage of discussions towards taking a minority interest in a new company comprising certain of Northern & Shell’s assets.
“No offer has been made and there is no certainty that any agreement will be reached. A further announcement will be made if and when appropriate.”
Trinity Mirror became the UK’s largest regional newspaper publisher in 2015 with the acquisition of the Local World group.
Mr Desmond bought Express Newspapers for £125m in 2000. His Northern & Shell business also includes OK! magazine and the Health Lottery.