ALMA MEDIA CORP. PRESS RELEASE 11 AUGUST 2006, 8.45 1 (2)
Alma Media acquires online home-buying and business premise marketplaces in Sweden
Alma Media Marketplaces acquired two online marketplaces in Sweden during July: Objektvision.se, the leading internet site for business premises in Sweden, and Bovision.se, the number two site for home-buying in Sweden, from the Swedish IT company Capitex Kalmar AB.
"Alma Media sees considerable growth potential in these new national online marketplaces. Objektvision and Bovision are both well-known brands in Sweden with an established customer base," says Raimo Mäkilä, head of the Marketplaces unit.
The acquisition suits Marketplaces' expansion strategy extremely well. The seller, Capitax Kalmar, for its part regards the transfer of these marketplaces to a media company as an excellent solution for ensuring their continued development. Capitex Kalmar will continue to be responsible for the maintenance and technical development of the services.
Online internet sites for business and residential premises had a market size in Sweden of roughly EUR 150 million in 2005. Price levels of home-buying internet services are lower today in Sweden than in Finland and Norway.
"We believe that by leveraging Alma Media's multichannel knowhow we will soon be able to raise the productivity of the sites we have acquired," Mäkilä continues.
Alongside online services, Alma Media is equally experienced in the business development for newspaper publishing and mobile and digital TV services.
Bovision has roughly 130,000 unique visitors every week and Objektvision about 8,000. The number of customers, i.e. real estate agents, totals 1,200 for Bovision and 2,900 for Objektvision.
The aggregate net sales of the acquired sites totalled EUR 1.7 million in 2005.
Focus on speed
Alma Media will focus on improving the speed of service in both Objektvision and Bovision. Business or home sites for sale will be brought up onto the internet promptly from the system used by the estate agents. "Speed will be our means of gaining a clear competitive edge as we intend to make Bovision the market leader as well," says Juha Mäkivaara, who has been appointed Managing Director of Bovision AB and Objektvision AB from 1 August. "Faster matching of supply and demand serves the interests of both buyers and sellers."
Raimo Mäkilä, Managing Director, Marketplaces, tel. +358-40-546 1892 (11 August, 14-15.00), email@example.com
Juha Mäkivaara, Managing Director, Bovision AB and Objektvision AB, tel. +358-40-777 8138, firstname.lastname@example.org
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DISTRIBUTION: Helsinki Exchanges, principal media
Alma Media is a Finnish media group that publishes newspapers, produces and distributes economic information, and maintains online marketplaces. The Group's portfolio contains business, afternoon, regional, local and town papers. Alma Media also owns leading online marketplaces, a business that it is also expanding into markets outside Finland.
Alma Media's best known products are the Aamulehti, Iltalehti and Kauppalehti papers and the Etuovi.com home-buying internet service. The Group derives about half of its net sales from media advertising and roughly 40 % from newspaper circulation revenues. Net sales of continuing operations in 2005 amounted to MEUR 286, generating an operating profit of MEUR 42 or an operating margin of 14.8 %. The company's share is quoted on the Main List of the Helsinki Exchanges. The trading code is ALN1V. More information at http://www.almamedia.fi/home.