Ringier adds two new executive board positions

Christian Unger (photo), CEO of Ringier media group announced the addition of two new group executive board positions: a CEO Ringier Digital for the digital business and a CEO Ringier Central Europe for business activities in Central and Eastern Europe.

The two members of the group executive board will be appointed and communicated by the end of November. The creation of the two posts is a result of the group’s plans to grow its digital business over the next five years.

The group will also create a new company sector for business activities in Central and Eastern Europe that will merge its activities in Hungary, Romania, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Serbia and Germany. The new sector will be led by the new CEO Central Europe, who is yet to be determined.

For 2008 Ringier Romania reported revenues of 171.8 million lei (€46.6 million), down 27%from 2007 (216.9 million lei). The fierce competition in the market and currency movements have eroded the company’s profit margin, which fell from 10% in 2007 to 6%. Ringier Romania recorded profit of 13 million lei (€3.53 million).

Group-wide, Ringier posted revenues of €967.6 million, up 5.3% and profit of €39.1 million. The growth drivers for Ringier’s annual results have been Switzerland, Czech Republic and Slovakia. Another growth driver was the digital business that generated 8.5% in the company’s total revenues in 2008, versus 5.5% in 2007.

Last year, the group decided to close down its operations in Ukraine, by selling its Free Media Ukraine, publisher of Blic daily to Adevarul Holding.

Ringier is a multinational media company with around 8000 employees in ten countries from Central and Eastern Europe and Asia. Ringier publishes more than 120 newspapers and magazines and produces and markets more than 20 TV programmes. The company operates about 80 websites and mobile platforms and has eleven printing plants. Ringier is a family business that is now at its fifth generation.

Some of the titles that Ringier publishes in Romania are Libertatea – the best selling newspaper in Romania last year, with 1.3 million readers - Evenimentul Zilei, Capital, Unica, Bolero, Bravo.

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