Italian shipping giant MSC Group has agreed a deal to buy a stable of Italian newspapers, most of which specialise in transport.

The container ship and cruise ship company said it will take over the daily Secolo XIX, based in Genoa, from publishing company Gedi, owned by Ferrari executive chairman John Elkann’s Exor.

Included in the transaction are The MediTelegraph, L’Avvisatore Marittimo, Il Giornale del Ponente Ligure and Tecnologie Trasporti Mare, covering various aspects of transport, including shipping.

The deal also involves Secolo XIX’s digital operations and advertising revenue.

TransportoEuropa cited the Aponte family’s MSC as saying the parties will now enter into exclusive negotiations to allow for due diligence.

They will also proceed with the “preparation and discussion of the contractual documents governing the transaction”.

No financial details have been released.

The announcement confirms a new trend among major lines of moving into the media sector.

Earlier in March TradeWinds reported CMA CGM boss Rodolphe Saade and his family were behind a €1.55bn ($1.69bn) venture to take the group further in the news business.

In an unusual acquisition for the liner and logistics group, CMA CGM will take an 80% stake in France’s third-largest media group, Altice Media.

The Saade family holding company Merit France will acquire the remaining 20% stake in the television, radio and digital company.

The move comes days after CMA CGM abandoned its bid to acquire UK logistics company Wincanton.

On 5 March, the liner giant threw in the towel on Wincanton after the haulage company accepted a significantly higher offer of £762m ($974m) from US-listed GXO Logistics.

CMA CGM and the Saade family have since secured an exclusive agreement to acquire Altice.