History

1991

In 1991, international publisher, Ringier entered the Czech market. The history of Swiss Ringier dates back to 1833, when it was founded in the town of Zofingen as a family printing works. Today it is the largest organisation in the media sector in Switzerland, employs around 7 thousand employees in ten countries and publishes more than 120 newspaper and magazine titles, produces around 20 television programmes, operates more than 50 web servers and owns 12 printing works.

In the Czech Republic, the publisher began their operation under the name Ringier ČSFR by publishing the economics weekly, Profit, and the television listings magazine Teletip and Auto Tip.

1992

A year later, the Czech media scene underwent a boom with the arrival of a new journalism style, which the Blesk newspaper began implementing. This style had not been seen before in a Czech context, serving the latest news and causes and in a very short time had acquired its readership and become the most sold and most read daily newspaper in the country. Also beginning this year, the Blesk magazine supplement was published.

1993

After the Czechoslovak Federation was dissolved in 1993, the publisher was renamed Ringier ČR and began publishing the first Sunday paper in the Czech market – Nedělní Blesk. In this year, Ringier bought society magazine, Reflex, in so doing bringing leading figures of modern journalism into the publishing house. Reflex has always been and continues to be a reflection of and mover in social events.

1994

In 1994, Ringier purchased the oldest Czech magazine for children – ABC. This fortnightly magazine, which was first published in 1957, has introduced the world of science, nature, sport and knowledge to a number of generations.

2001

When Ringier purchased a 51% share in the Sport newspaper, it attained a dominant position amongst other publishers. The publisher’s titles are amongst the market leaders in almost all leading printed periodicals.

2003

From 2003, Sport was solely owned by Ringier ČR, and two years later, thanks to the great success of Blesk on Sundays, sports fans also got their Sunday paper in the form of Nedělní Sport.

2004

In 2004, Ringier began publishing the weekly, Blesk pro ženy. From the beginning of its publication to the present time, Blesk pro ženy is the most sold women’s weekly. A year later, Ringier ČR expanded its Blesk magazine family with additions, Blesk Hobby and Blesk Křížovky (Crosswords) being born, amongst the leisure time titles with the largest circulations.

2006

Sales and readership show that people particularly favour Blesk branded titles, and as such in 2006 the Blesk titles segment grew with another edition, this time focused on women readers – the monthly, Blesk Zdraví (Health) has enjoyed great popularity from its first editions, and as such, three years later the magazine, Blesk Vaše recepty (Your Recipes) was also added.

2007

To go with the most sold daily newspaper, Blesk, the publisher purchases the competing news and entertainment daily, Aha! in 2007. This becomes the third of the publisher’s dailies to be published seven days a week, including Nedělní Aha! In 2007 to 2009, the publisher included films on DVD under the brands of its titles. Ringier was the first publisher in the market to link daily newspapers with DVDs commercially. This sales model was so successful that whole editions of films were issued with the Blesk, Aha!, Sport, Reflex and more brands, which were topically linked to the readers’ interests.

2010

In 2010, the joint venture Ringier Axel Springer Media AG was founded, which merged 50:50 the activities of Swiss company, Ringier AG and German publisher, Axel Springer SE in the Central and East European markets. Linking up with publisher, Axel Springer AG, which was founded in 1946 by Axel Springer, resulted in a connection with one of the largest German publishing houses. Its international portfolio includes 170 newspapers and magazines published in 33 countries.

In the Czech Republic, the publisher operates under the name Ringier Axel Springer CZ. Thanks to this merger, the company’s motoring segment publications expand with the most read weekly, Svět motorů, which has been published since 1947 and over the whole of its existence has managed to maintain the number one position in terms of sold copies.

2011

2011 was a year marked by the building of integrated newsrooms for the new media organisation, Ringier Axel Springer CZ. The editorial boards acquire new positions, and 5 integrated newsrooms are founded, where the editors of printed and online editions and all magazines and supplements are joined. From these integrated newsrooms, new internet websites are run, such as www.isport.cz, www.blesk.cz, www.auto.cz and other online titles.

2012

In 2012, Ringier Axel Springer CZ launched the BLESKmobil service – the first virtual mobile operator in the CR which today remains the largest virtual mobile services provider. As part of its 20th birthday celebrations, Blesk delivered a total of over 4 million copies of its birthday issue to all letterboxes throughout the country on 7 June. On the same day, the traditional Blesk issue was also published, but in XXXL format. With the growing numbers of what are now called smartphones, the need for ordinary users to keep in the picture and deal with requirements online was also growing, and as such the publisher came up with some interesting digital projects – from May 2012, readers were able to purchase electronic editions of all its titles on the iPad in the kiosk application. Ringier Axel Springer CZ launched a new ticket portal in August, www.vstupenky.cz offering tickets for cultural, sports and social events.

2013

2013 was a year when readership of the www.blesk.cz website saw growth of 32%. This fantastic growth was also supported by new projects in the form of Blesk TV.

The football Fanliga and ice hockey Fantasy League were launched on the www.isport.cz website. Also at www.isport.cz, the video portal, iSport TV, was implemented, which made the on-line title the most visited website in the sports entertainment field.

Following a complete redesign of the www.auto.cz website, more than four hundred thousand visitors read news on the site each month.

2014

On 30 April 2014, CZECH NEWS CENTER a.s. completed the acquisition of Czech subsidiary, Ringier Axel Springer AG. CZECH NEWS CENTER a.s., with Daniel Křetínský and Patrik Tkáč as shareholders, took over the activities of Ringier Axel Springer CZ a.s. publisher on the basis of their agreement of 20 December 2013.

Patrik Tkáč is Deputy Chair of the Board of investment group, J&T, whose partner is Daniel Křetínský. J&T Group focus on providing comprehensive services related to private banking, property management for private clients and institutions and investment banking.

Daniel Křetínský was involved in the founding of Energetický a průmyslový holding within the J&T Group, and is now partial owner of it. Energetický a průmyslový holding is a Czech conglomerate associating dozens of companies operating in Central Europe and focused in particular on the power industry.

Further information on the company’s shareholders available here.

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& PROJECTS

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