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Ringier and la Mobilière strengthening their partnership
Digital transformation is necessitating and facilitating the continuous further development of business models. Ringier has accordingly evolved over the last 12 years from a traditional publishing company into an internationally active, diversified and digitalised media company through the targeted acquisition of digital marketplaces and investments in technologies. With a digital share of operating profit of around 70 percent, Ringier is today at the forefront among comparable European companies.
La Mobilière introduced an extensive transformation in 2015 on the basis of its digitalisation strategy with the aim of developing the company further and sustainably securing its long-term business success. As well as a comprehensive modernisation of its own IT landscape, la Mobilière is investing in the development of its ecosystems on all issues concerning the home and SMEs as well as in digital marketplaces including Scout24 Schweiz AG, which is already managed today as a joint venture with Ringier.
The two Swiss companies have now decided to intensify their successful partnership. La Mobilière is investing in Ringier AG and receiving a stake of 25 percent of the shares. Most of the invested capital will flow into the further development of Ringier AG. The share purchase is to be completed in the first half of 2020. Both Ringier and la Mobilière will remain fully independent companies. The parties have agreed not to disclose the amount of the investment and the valuation of the shares.
Michael Ringier, Chairman of the Board of Directors of Ringier AG: “We are delighted to welcome la Mobilière on board as a shareholder. La Mobilière is a reliable and stable shareholder. We value each other and already collaborate successfully as joint venture partners for Scout24 Schweiz AG. The long-term investment by la Mobilière serves for us as further proof that we have successfully developed our group further in recent years.”
La Mobilière is investing in Ringier AG with a long-term investment horizon. “We firmly believe that Ringier is an optimum partner for la Mobilière that will enable us to advance our digital transformation. Like Ringier, la Mobilière can look back on a successful corporate history of around 200 years and has the entrepreneurial courage to pursue ambitious growth targets,” says Urs Berger, Chairman of the Board of Directors of la Mobilière.
Marc Walder, CEO of Ringier AG: “We are impressed by la Mobilière’s long-term commitment, which is ideally suited to Ringier. La Mobilière supports Ringier’s strategy of consistently investing internationally in digital marketplaces, independent journalism and cutting-edge technologies. Ringier has developed into one of Europe’s leading digital media companies in recent years and we intend to continue along this path. The journalistic brands will remain independent.”
Markus Hongler, CEO of la Mobilière: “Ringier has a number of abilities and strengths that attract us, including its platform economy and target group-specific digital market cultivation with different tools. We are also gaining new openings in attractive international markets, particularly in the EU. This will provide us with the opportunity to rethink the distribution of products and services outside our home market of Switzerland.”
As a new minority shareholder, la Mobilière will be represented on the Ringier Board of Directors with two seats that will be occupied by Urs Berger and Markus Hongler. Together with CEO Marc Walder, the Ringier family holds the clear majority of the Ringier Group with a shareholding of 75 percent.
There will be no change to the composition of the operational management bodies. Both the Group Executive Board of Ringier AG and the Executive Board of la Mobilière will remain unchanged.
Ringier AG is an innovative, digitalised and diversified Swiss media company that is active in Europe, Africa and Asia. Its portfolio comprises over 100 subsidiaries in the areas of print media, digital media, radio, ticketing, entertainment and e-commerce as well as leading digital marketplaces in the vehicle, real estate and job sectors. Ringier supports innovative digital start-ups as a venture capital investor. Family enterprise Ringier, which was founded in 1833 as a publishing and printing company, has invested consistently in recent years in the digitalisation and internationalisation of the group. Around 7,300 employees in 19 countries generated revenue of more than one billion Swiss francs in 2018. Around 70 percent of operating profit already comes today from the digital business, putting Ringier at the forefront of European media companies. Ringier stands for innovation, independence and freedom of expression.
About la Mobilière
Every third household and every third company in Switzerland is insured by la Mobilière. Active in all lines of insurance, la Mobilière had an annual premium volume of CHF 3.831 billion as at December 31, 2018. Eighty entrepreneurially run general agencies with their own claims service guarantee proximity to more than two million customers at around 160 locations. La Mobilière Insurance Company Ltd is domiciled in Berne, la Mobilière Life Insurance Company Ltd in Nyon. La Mobilière Group also includes la Mobilière Asset Management Ltd, la Mobilière Services Ltd, Protekta Legal Protection Insurance Ltd, Protekta Risk-Consulting Ltd, Mobi24 Call-Service-Center Ltd and XpertCenter Ltd, all domiciled in Berne, as well as Trianon Ltd, domiciled in Renens, SC, SwissCaution SA, domiciled in Nyon, and bexio AG, domiciled in Rapperswil. La Mobilière has more than 5,500 employees in its home markets of Switzerland and the Principality of Liechtenstein as well as 345 trainees. It is Switzerland’s oldest private insurance company and has operated on a cooperative basis since its founding in 1826.