Lebedev Holdings

Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport written question – answered on 13th February 2019.

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Photo of Tom Watson Tom Watson Deputy Leader of the Labour Party, Shadow Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport

To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what information his Department holds on the identity of the new part-owner of the Evening Standard's parent company, Lebedev Holdings.

Photo of Jeremy Wright Jeremy Wright The Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport

Neither I nor my Department has had any contact from Lebedev Holding Ltd or its representatives about the transaction. While the Secretary of State has powers under the Enterprise Act 2002 to intervene in certain media mergers raising public interest concerns, there is no requirement under the Enterprise Act 2002 for parties to advise us of the transaction.

My officials will contact Lebedev Holdings Ltd about the transaction, and to obtain further information to determine whether there has been a change of control which would give rise to a merger falling within the jurisdiction of the 2002 Act. However, writing to the party does not necessarily indicate that any transaction raises any public interest concerns.

These decisions are always made in a quasi judicial capacity by the Secretary of State.

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