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Nine agreed to pay around 40 million Australian dollars (US$37.9 million) for the stake, a person familiar with the matter said. Nine will continue to be Microsoft’s Australian media partner, the company said in a statement.

Mi9′s flagship asset is ninemsn.com.au. The group’s news sites reached a combined 2.9 million unique viewers in August, according to Nielsen.

Nine has endured some tough times since forming the Mi9 joint venture with Microsoft in 1997.

In 2006, Publishing & Broadcasting Ltd., a company backed by billionaire James Packer, sold 50% of Nine to private-equity firm CVC Capital Partners for A$4.5 billion. CVC bought the rest of Nine, which also owns assets such as ticketing business Ticketek and Sydney’s Allphone Arena, over the next two years.