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TPG Capital aborts bid for Fairfax

At 11:53am (AEST), Fairfax shares were trading 11.6 per cent lower at 97.25 cents.Fairfax will now follow its timeline of spinning off Domain by the end of 2017 announced in February, with Fairfax CEO Greg Hywood today saying the company is making “excellent progress” with preparations and is on track for completion by the end of 2017.Site highlights each day to your inbox. These were the complicated way Fairfax accounts for revenues between print and online assets especially in its prized Domain business, and concerns over the lack of transparency over estate agency commissions in the P&L.With the private equity groups out of the picture, Fairfax is sticking with its original plan to spin off Domain.Overall Domain revenue is up 10 per cent, with its total digital business up 22 per cent.The buyer interest in the 186-year-old publisher of the Sydney Morning Herald and Australian Financial Review newspapers had sent its shares soaring to a six-year high of A$1.270 in early June.Its other business divisions – including Australian Community, Macquarie Radio and New Zealand Media – operated at a loss during this period.Back in May, Fairfax announced it would cut 125 journalist jobs – around a quarter of its newsroom – to cut costs, which triggered a one-week worker strike.The publisher last month fielded bids worth as much as A$2.87 billion ($2.2 billion) from TPG Capital Management LP and Hellman & Friedman, and both firms were granted due diligence.TPG confirmed on Sunday that it had ditched its plans to buy Fairfax for $2.76 billion after examining the media company’s books.Mr Hywood and Fairfax chairman Nick Falloon briefed analysts this morning after private equity groups TPG and Hellman & Friedman did not proceed with formal bids for the media company.