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Atresmedia chief passes away

José Manuel Lara Bosch, chairman of Grupo Planeta and Grupo Atresmedia, the owner of commercial channel Antena 3, has died at the age of 68 after a long illness.

Jose Manuel Lara BoschLara Bosch, who took over publishing giant Grupo Planeta in 1985 on the death of his father, served as president of Antena 3 from 2003 following the acquisition of part of the broadcaster by Grupo Planeta subsidiary Planeta-DeAgostini.

He is largely credited with turning Planeta, founded by José Manuel Lara Hernández in 1949, into a multinational media group.

Separately, Juan Luis Cebrián and Manuel Polanco, the president and vice-president respectively of Spanish media group Prisa, have resigned as directors of Mediaset España as a result of the reduction of Prisa’s stake in Mediaset’s Spanish operation to 5.1%.

Polanco has withdrawn from the group’s executive committee and nomination and remuneration committee, while Cebrián has withdrawn from the audit and compliance committee.

Both Cebrián and Polanco joined Mediaset España’s board in 2010 following the sale by Prisa of commercial channel Cuatro to Mediaset España in exchange for a stake in the company. However, Prisa has progressively sold chunks of its 17.3% in the Spanish operation. In April last year it sold a 3.69% stake for €121.2 million (US$138 million) and July Mediaset purchased a further 8.5% for €307 million.