Fiat’s Increased Stake in RCS Will Extend Agnelli Family Media Reach image

Recently, Fiat announced its plans to almost double the stake in RCS Mediagroup to 20.1%, the result of a capital increase which will end this week.

On Friday, June 28th, Italian businessman and owner of 16.6% stake in RCS, Giuseppe Rotelli, died at age 68, covering in uncertainty the company’s balance of power after the cash call. The Italian automaker already controls the La Stampa newspaper, which will be the biggest shareholder in RCS, after other investors will choose to sell their rights and will see their stakes diluted by the cash call.

Rotelli, was among the shareholders who stood to have his stake cut, criticizing RCS’ overhaul. He decided he won’t take part in the capital increase and several weeks ago he announced his plans to sell his rights to subscribe to the RCS cash call on the market. Fiat, which currently has 10.5% in RCS, said that the increase in its stake assumes the 400 million euro capital increase is fully subscribed.

Increasing its stake in RCS, Fiat will extend the media reach for the Agnelli family and implicitly Chiarman John Elkann. Fiat’s increased control over RCS, might lead to closer links between Corriere della Sera and La Stampa newspapers.