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Ringier to acquire a majority interest in media swiss group

Ringier AG will take over 80% of the shares of media swiss ag to become Switzerland’s premier publishing company in the electronic media segment.

The media swiss ag corporate group with offices in Flamatt, Teufen and Urdorf is a leading Swiss competence center for online market places and cross-media services. media swiss ag has 350 employees and operates, among others, the Scout24 market places and the Gate24 directories in Switzerland. Ringier’s majority interest extends across all business units of media swiss group, including the Scout24 market places, the Gate24 directories, and the subsidiaries which are engaged in advertising sales and in cross-media and technology activities. The combination of the content and commercial platforms of Ringier and media swiss group establishes a leading provider in an increasingly convergent print and online market. As a result of this acquisition, Ringier will play a part in the rapidly growing business of electronic classifieds and effectively strengthen the potential to develop cross-media business models in a publishing environment.

Local classifieds and international opportunity.
This step will provide access to the local and regional online classifieds market, especially for the Blick group. In the future, Ringier will increasingly combine journalistic contents and high-yield online products with a broad reach. This model will also be implemented in Ringier’s core markets abroad, especially in the Czech Republic, in Slovakia, Hungary, Romania and Serbia. Ringier will apply the cross-media know-how of Internet service provider Xmedia to put publishing projects into practice quickly and in line with market needs. The broad know- how of Ringier in electronic media opens up future-oriented perspectives for IP-TV (television via the Internet) and the distribution of new and existing radio programs via Internet and mobiles.

Previous owners to retain an interest
media Swiss group expects revenues of 75 million swiss francs ($66.8 million) this year. The operational management will continue to be in the hands of Dölf Früh, founder and Chairman of the Board of Directors of media swiss ag, and his business partner, Daniel Grossen, founder and CEO of Scout24 Schweiz AG. The two entrepreneurs will retain a 20% interest in media Swiss group. The platforms of media swiss group generate approximately six million visits per month and exceed 300 million page impressions by far. Furthermore, media Swiss ag is the market leader of town and city maps which are financed through advertising and distributed to all households in over 2000 Swiss towns.

The maps are also available at municipal and tourist offices. media swiss group also includes an e-business unit (Flamatt-based Xmedia AG) to develop and operate online market places. Additionally, media swiss group has a 49.9% stake in Scout24 group of Switzerland. 50.1% of the shares of Scout24 are held by Deutsche Telekom. With its Scout24 and Gate24 brands, media Swiss group has already established a distinctive market position. The group will continue to focus on electronic market places and directories, IT developments, and market cultivation. It currently employs a marketing staff of 150 in Switzerland. 100 new jobs are expected to be created in the near future to enable Ringier to quickly develop additional online products.

The parties have agreed not to disclose the purchase price. (