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Guardian group considers Auto Trader sell

The Guardian Media Group (GMG), the publisher of the Guardian and the Observer newspapers, could sell off its Trader Media classified arm, in preparation for a strategic review of its non-national newspaper assests.

Executives confirmed yesterday that GMG would appoint financial advisers in the next few weeks to conduct the review. It was reported at the weekend that a number of investment banks had already been approached.

The review is said to be aimed at ‘de-risking’ GMG by cutting the group's exposure to classified print advertising revenues.

The company's Trader Media division is therefore seen as a possible candidate for sale, although executives insisted yesterday the group might well decide to retain what is a highly profitable business. Alternatively, it might decide to simply sell a small stake in the division.

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