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Czech mogul turned politician boosts media empire

November 25, 2013

PRAGUE (AP) — Billionaire Andrej Babis, a political rising star dubbed the “Czech Berlusconi,” is boosting his media empire by acquiring the nation’s most popular radio station.

Babis already owns two major nationwide newspapers, and his media presence is earning him comparisons to Silvio Berlusconi — the Italian media tycoon who until recently dominated his nation’s politics. Babis said the radio deal has nothing to do with his political ambitions.

Babis’ centrist ANO — or Yes — movement came in a surprise second in last month’s Parliamentary elections. It is negotiating with the leftist Social Democrats and the center-right Christian Democrats over a possible coalition government, in which Babis hopes to become finance minister.

His Agrofert Group said Monday it had struck a takeover deal with the owner of Radio Impuls.

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