Springer wants lion′s share in Polish web portal | Business| Economy and finance news from a German perspective | DW | 04.06.2012
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Springer wants lion's share in Polish web portal

The Ringier Axel Springer Media Group (SAS) has signed a deal to acquire a majority stake in Poland's online portal Onet.pl. The German-Swiss joint venture hopes to profit more from the booming Polish Internet market.

German media tycoon Springer announced on Monday that together with its Swiss joint venture partner, Ringier, it aims to acquire a 75-percent share in Poland's leading online portal, Onet.pl.

The German-Swiss SAS Group signed a contract to this end with the Polish media enterprise TVN, which is to keep a 25-percent share in the web portal. The transaction to the tune of 215.5 million euros ($270 million) will still have to be approved by antitrust authorities, but is scheduled to be completed by January 1, 2013.

Onet.pl is Poland's most successful web portal and reaches about 70 percent of online users with its news and other services.

Lucrative market segment

"The majority takeover of Onet.pl would be a milestone for our young joint venture and would ideally extend our online portfolio," SAS Chief Executive Florian Fels said in a statement on Monday.

SAS General Manager in Poland, Edyta Sadowska, said investment in that area was a wise decision as the local market was experiencing a boost.

"Poland is among the European nations where Internet use increases by up to 6.0 percent annually," Sadowska added. "And the online advertizing market grows correspondingly.

hg/gsw (dpa, Reuters)