Slate carries an insightful article on why it is that German, French, and British companies are quite keen to buy American publishers (link from booktrade.info).
The main thrust of the article is a point which young wannabe writers are often completely unaware of, namely that, in financial and commercial terms, book publishing is a piddling little business of no real interest to any serious wheeler-dealer.
Time Warner, for instance, owner of such major publishing imprints as Little, Brown and Warner Books, has a market value of $85 billion. And it's just sold the publishing arm of the business (well, more like a fingernail, actually) for $537 million. In other words, publishing was six-tenths of one per cent of Time Warner. And yet writers imagine that selling a book to Little, Brown is a really big-time deal. T'ain't. Except, as I say, when viewed within the context of a piddling little business overall.