German news publisher and multimedia conglomerate Axel Springer is laying down an increasing amount of cash to re-invent itself as a digital player. Now it is buying a position in Poland’s most popular web portal, Onet.pl.
Springer’s Europe JV with Swiss Ringier is teaming with TV broadcaster TVN, which already owns the portal, to jointly own 75 percent of Onet.pl’s shares, for 956.25 million Polish zloty ($ 273 million, €217.5 million).
Ringier Axel Springer CEO Florian Fels, in an announcement, calls it a “milestone” for the two-year-old JV.
Founded in 1996, Onet.pl is Poland’s sixth-most-visited website, according to Alexa. Poland has Europe’s eight most active internet audience, according to comScore.
Axel Springer publishes the highest-circulation English-language newspaper in the west, Germany’s Bild, as well as Die Welt. And it has moved rapidly in to online services, including the Hamburg.de, Gamigo.de, Motortalk.de, Auto.cz, Students.cz, AuFeminin, OnMeda.de and FondsDiscount.de, classified sites like CarWale.
And it is increasingly acquisitive in pure-play digital, having recently laid down £110 million for UK number-two recruitment site TotalJobs and taken a stake in property rental site Airbnb in exchange for providing German marketing support.
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