Leading Czech Publisher Buys Into Web


[Prague, CZECH REPUBLIC] Mafra, the publisher of the Czech Republic’s
leading daily newspaper, MF Dnes, acquired a 34 percent stake in Mobil
Media company, owner of one of the one of most influencing national
webzines, Mobil.cz, for an undisclosed sum.


Mobil.cz, established in 1996, is Czech leader in the category of
technically oriented news servers with some 150,000 page views per
month.

The publisher of Mobil.cz, Mobil Media a.s., runs several other
less important servers besides this popular site, which focuses mainly on
mobile telecommunications and pocket computing. The company closed its 2000
operations with slight profit and sales of CZK 18 million (US$ 0.5
million), which represented year-on-year growth of 96 percent.


Mafra is no newcomer on the Net; it runs the iDnes site, which was originally the Web
version of the daily but has grown to include extremely additional features including general news and
commentaries to chats and e-commerce.

Both iDnes news site and its WAP
version for mobile phones has been voted by the panel of Czech media
experts as the best sites of 2000 in their respective categories.


More than 80 staff member of Mafra’s multimedia segment and 20 employees of
Mobil Media soon unite. The combined operations of
Mafra and Mobil Media is expected to attract some 15 million page views
per month as well as a lion’s share of local Internet marketing money.

Sources close to the deal say the target is 25 to 30 percent of the
total value of the market, which is forecasted at nearly CZK 150 million (US$
4,2 million) for 2001.

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