RealTime IT News

Fininvest Takes Holding in Sportal

The multimedia communications group Fininvest has taken a minority shareholding in the Sportal Network, which runs top sites for some of the largest football clubs in Europe.

Fininvest and Sportal have been working together on the official site of AC Milan, an Italian football team which is actually owned by Fininvest.

Next month Sportal will launch multisport sites in Italy and Spain and provide content for some forthcoming Fininvest web sites. Sportal Network already runs official sites for other leading football clubs such as Juventus, Paris Saint-Germain, and Bayern Munich.

"We believe that Sportal can set the pace for web sports content in both Italy and Spain, where Internet usage is intense, but as yet confined to a comparatively small segment of the population." said Rob Hersov, CEO and founder of Sportal.

"The alliance with Fininvest will give us an enormous advantage in reaching sports fans, whether they are on the web, watching TV, reading a magazine, using a wireless device, or at Milan's San Siro stadium."

Other synergies between the two companies include potential benefits from reciprocal online and offline promotions. The partners anticipate exposure generated by Mediaset TV channels, Mondadori print media, and by Jumpy, Fininvest's free access service, in Italy.

"This is an important step in our strategy of building a leading European network of web properties focusing on content and service development, that can contribute to enriching our pan-European portal," said Mario Luzzi, CEO of Fininvest's Internet holding company Europortal Investments.

Fininvest has stated the objective of becoming a key Internet player on the European market.