The owner of the Yellow Pages online and print directories says it has received government approval for the $745-million sale of the Trader Corp. auto sales directory business to London-based private equity firm Apax Partners for $745-million.
Yellow Media Inc. said Wednesday that the sale got a nod from the Federal Minister of Industry but still requires several customary approvals before it closes by the end of July.
Yellow Media decided to sell the division, which publishes the website AutoTrader.ca as well as printed editions of its classified ad service for car sellers and buys, to help reduce debt as it continues its transition to a digital company.
Trader was formed in June 2006 with the integration of Classified Media (Canada) Holdings Inc. and Trader Media Corporation and was purchased for a total of $1.2-billion. The division is home to various classified advertisement publications and websites including Auto Trader magazine, AutoHebdo.net and the New Home Guide.
The real estate, employment and LesPAC.com businesses are excluded from the proposed divestiture. Those businesses will continue to be owned and managed by Yellow Media Inc.