Otava will purchase WSOY's holdings in Yhtyneet Kuvalehdet Oy, Suuri Suomalainen Kirjakerho Oy and Acta Print Oy. WSOY and Otava will continue their book club co-operation on a commercial basis.

The Board of Directors of Werner Söderström Corporation - WSOY has today, 28 August, approved the agreement by which Kustannusosakeyhtiö Otava will purchase WSOY's 50 per cent holdings in the jointly owned companies. The title to the shares and the administration of the companies will transfer to Otava on 31 August 1998.

The total consideration for the deal is FIM 778 million, and its impact on WSOY's net results for the current year is estimated at FIM 470 million. The proceeds from the sale will be used for growth investments.

The Articles of Association of WSOY's and Otava's 50-50 owned associated companies include provisions entitling Otava to redeem WSOY's shares in such companies upon the merger of WSOY, Sanoma Corporation, Helsinki Media Company Oy and Oy Devarda Ab on 1 May 1999 to form a new company called Sanoma-WSOY Oyj.

WSOY and Otava concluded, however, that it is in the best interests of the two shareholders and of the associated companies to carry out the redemption of the shares already before the implementation of the merger.

The Boards of Directors of the merging companies as well as WSOY's Supervisory Board have approved the redemption agreement in accordance with the merger plan.


Antero Siljola Group President and CEO

DISTRIBUTION: HEX Helsinki Stock Exchange, principal media

For additional information: Mr. Antero Siljola, Group President and CEO; tel. +358 9 6168 200 or 040 580 8280 Mr. Aarno Heinonen, Executive Vice President; tel. +358 9 6168 219 or 0400 408 938