Ringier Digital AG acquires Scout24 Switzerland

Ringier Digital AG has acquired all the shares of the Scout24 Switzerland group of companies. As a result, Ringier Digital AG is now the sole shareholder in such leading Swiss classified-advertisement marketplaces as AutoScout24, MotoScout24 and ImmoScout24. The transaction has enabled Ringier to strengthen its rapidly growing digital business.

Ringier Digital AG, a wholly owned subsidiary of Ringier AG, has acquired all the shares of Scout24 International Management AG, whose registered offices are in Baar in the Swiss canton of Zug and which will now be renamed Classifieds Business Beteiligungs- und Verwaltungs AG. As a result of this transaction, Ringier Digital AG is now the sole shareholder in the Scout24 Switzerland group of companies. Since late 2007, Ringier, the internationally active Swiss media group, has already owned a 49.9 percent stake in Scout 24 Switzerland Holding, whose headquarters have been in Flamatt in the Swiss canton of Fribourg since 1998. This significant investment in the profitable Scout24 Switzerland businesses underscores Ringier’s commitment to the further development of classified advertising as a major element in its digital strategy. The Scout24 platforms are among Switzerland’s best-known digital marketplaces and hold leading positions in their individual market segments.

Thomas Kaiser, Ringier AG’s Chief Digital Officer Ringier AG and Managing Director of Ringier Digital AG, sees clear benefits in acquiring the entire share capital of these companies. As he puts it, “Scout24 Switzerland has always been an important part of Ringier Digital AG and its operations are closely linked with those of the other Ringier Digital subsidiaries. This historic step not only enables us to consolidate the existing ties between these companies, but also provides the foundation for the next significant growth phase.”

Marc Walder, Ringier AG’s CEO, adds, “The significance of this transaction for Ringier is enormous. It has enabled us substantially to enhance our already significant position in Switzerland’s digital classified advertising market – the online marketplace for jobs, real estate and automobiles.”

The acquisition will provide an additional pillar for Ringier Digital’s future growth. Over the last three years, annual sales at Ringier Digital have expanded at an average rate of 35 percent, a trend which has been accompanied by rapidly increasing profitability. Full consolidation of Scout24 Switzerland will enable Ringier Digital to contribute more than CHF 200 million to Ringier’s consolidated revenues in 2014.

Ringier AG, Corporate Communications