Axel Springer

European multinational digital and popular periodical publishing house with numerous multimedia news brands.


Media and Communications  

Axel Springer SE is a media and technology company that operates in over 40 countries. It is focused on providing information and empowering individuals to make informed decisions through its diverse media brands and classifieds portals. Some of its well-known brands include BILD, WELT, INSIDER, POLITICO, StepStone Group, and AVIV Group.

The company has successfully transformed from a traditional print media company to become Europe's leading digital publisher. Its goal is to become the global market leader in digital content and digital classifieds through accelerated growth. Axel Springer is headquartered in Berlin and employs more than 18,000 people worldwide.

In line with the innovative spirit of its founder, Axel Springer SE continues to break new ground while staying true to its core values. The company is focused on building a fast-growing and profitable digital portfolio and establishing journalism as a successful business model in the digital world. It achieves this by transforming its established media brands, developing new initiatives, and strategically acquiring web companies. Collaborating with the current generation of digital founders is also an important aspect of the company's digitization strategy.


In 1946, a visionary journalist named Axel Springer founded a company that would revolutionize the media industry. What began as Axel Springer Verlag GmbH soon blossomed into a publishing powerhouse, setting the stage for an extraordinary business narrative.

In 1948, Axel Springer Verlag made its mark with the launch of Hamburger Abendblatt, its first daily newspaper. The company's commitment to delivering timely and engaging content quickly gained traction. However, it was in 1952 that Axel Springer Verlag truly captured the public's attention with the introduction of Bild, a daily newspaper that would go on to become Europe's most widely circulated publication.

Building on its early success, Axel Springer Verlag made strategic moves to solidify its position in the German media landscape. In 1953, the company acquired Die Welt, a respected publisher known for its flagship daily paper, Die Welt, and its Sunday counterpart, Welt am Sonntag. This strategic acquisition expanded Axel Springer Verlag's reach and influence, propelling it to new heights.

Embracing growth and innovation, Axel Springer Verlag further expanded its presence in the media world. In 1959, the company acquired a stake in Ullstein AG, which owned prominent Berlin newspapers, including Berliner Morgenpost and B.Z., as well as a thriving book-publishing business. This strategic move not only strengthened Axel Springer Verlag's position in Berlin but also reinforced its commitment to diversifying its portfolio.

Throughout the years, Axel Springer Verlag faced both accolades and challenges. In 1968, the company experienced opposition and acts of violence from the Extra-Parliamentary Opposition (APO), a student movement critical of its alleged biased coverage. Despite the turbulence, Axel Springer Verlag remained steadfast, firmly committed to its journalistic principles.

Undeterred by adversity, Axel Springer Verlag continued to evolve and expand. The company invested in state-of-the-art printing facilities in Essen-Kettwig in 1972 and Ahrensburg near Hamburg in 1984, solidifying its printing capabilities and ensuring the timely delivery of its publications.

In 1985, Axel Springer Verlag achieved a significant milestone by going public, offering shares to the public. This move not only signalled the company's confidence in its future but also allowed individuals to share in its success.

As the world entered the digital age, Axel Springer Verlag recognized the importance of embracing technology and embarked on a path of digital transformation. In 2001, the company formed a joint subsidiary, AG, marking its entry into the digital media landscape. This strategic move laid the foundation for Axel Springer Verlag's future success in the digital realm.

In the following years, Axel Springer Verlag made strategic acquisitions and partnerships to solidify its presence in the online space. It acquired affiliate marketers Zanox and Digital Window in 2009, expanding its reach in online marketing, and StepStone ASA, a leading job market company.

The company's dedication to growth and innovation was further exemplified in 2012 when it formed a joint venture, Axel Springer Digital Classifieds, and acquired TotalJobs in the UK. These moves cemented Axel Springer Verlag's position as a global player in the digital marketplace.

In 2015, the company made a significant leap into the realm of digital news and content with the acquisition of Business Insider. Recognizing the importance of staying ahead of the curve, Axel Springer Verlag secured its position as a leader in business, celebrity, and technology news.

The business narrative of Axel Springer Verlag is one of resilience, adaptability, and forward-thinking. From its humble beginnings as a newspaper publisher to its transformation into a digital media powerhouse, Axel Springer Verlag has constantly evolved to meet the changing needs of its audience and the media landscape.

Today, as Axel Springer SE, the company stands tall as Europe's leading digital publisher, with a global presence in over 40 countries. Its diverse portfolio of media brands and classifieds portals empowers individuals to make informed decisions and shapes the future of journalism in the digital age.

The story of Axel Springer SE is a testament to the power of innovation and the unwavering pursuit of excellence in an ever-changing business landscape. With its sights set on becoming the global market leader in digital content and classifieds, Axel Springer SE continues to write its remarkable business narrative, inspiring generations to come.


“At Axel Springer SE, our mission is to empower people to make free decisions for their lives by providing them with reliable and diverse information through our media brands and classifieds portals. We strive to be a trusted source of news, insights, and entertainment, contributing to a well-informed society and fostering dialogue and understanding.”

The mission statement of Axel Springer SE highlights the company's commitment to providing individuals with reliable and diverse information to enable them to make informed decisions. It emphasizes the importance of journalism in fostering a well-informed society and promoting dialogue and understanding. The mission statement reflects the company's dedication to its audience and the role it plays in shaping public discourse,


“Our vision at Axel Springer SE is to be the global market leader in digital content and digital classifieds. We are committed to leveraging technology and innovation to deliver compelling and engaging experiences to our audience. We aim to shape the future of journalism, setting new standards and creating sustainable business models in the digital world. With a focus on accelerated growth, profitability, and strategic acquisitions, we aspire to be at the forefront of the media and technology industry, driving positive change and making a lasting impact.”

In terms of the vision statement, Axel Springer SE aims to be the global market leader in digital content and digital classifieds. This vision demonstrates the company's ambition to leverage technology and innovation to deliver compelling experiences to its audience. It emphasizes the company's commitment to shaping the future of journalism and setting new standards in the industry. The vision statement also highlights the company's focus on accelerated growth, profitability, and strategic acquisitions, positioning itself at the forefront of the media and technology landscape.

Key Team

Andreas Wiele ( President Classifieds Media)

Dr. Stephanie Caspar (President Technology and Data)

Dr. Andreas Wiele (President Marketing and Classifieds)

Claas Holtmann (Chief Strategy Officer (CSO))

Dr. Jens Müffelmann (Executive Vice President International)

Dr. Nicolaus Lange (Executive Vice President Human Resources)

Recognition and Awards
Pulitzer Prize European Newspaper Award Grimme Online Award Lead Awards German Press Photo Prize Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity Digital Media Awards

Products and Services

Axel Springer SE offers a diverse range of products and services across its media brands and classifieds portals. These offerings cater to various interests and provide valuable information and experiences to a wide audience. Here are some key products and services provided by Axel Springer SE:

  • Media Brands: Axel Springer SE is known for its extensive portfolio of media brands, which includes renowned newspapers, magazines, and online portals. These brands deliver news, analysis, and entertainment across a range of topics. Notable media brands include Bild, Die Welt, Fakt, Sport Bild, Auto Bild, and Musikexpress. These publications cover areas such as current news, sports, lifestyle, automobiles, consumer electronics, and more.
  • Digital Platforms: Axel Springer SE has a strong presence in the digital world, with a focus on digital content and classifieds. It operates online portals and platforms that provide a wide range of information and services. This includes news websites, lifestyle publications, technology journalism platforms, and online classified advertising platforms.
  • Classifieds Portals: Axel Springer SE owns and operates classified portals that connect individuals and businesses, offering a variety of services. For example, StepStone Group is a leading job portal, connecting job seekers with employers. AVIV Group operates real estate marketing portals and coupon portals, offering services related to housing and savings.
  • Affiliate Marketing: Axel Springer SE is also involved in the field of affiliate marketing. It owns affiliate marketers such as Awin and, which facilitate partnerships between advertisers and publishers. These platforms enable businesses to promote their products or services through affiliate programs.
  • International Expansion: Axel Springer SE has expanded its operations globally, with subsidiaries, joint ventures, and licensing agreements in more than 40 countries. This allows the company to reach a broad audience and provide its products and services on an international scale.

Axel Springer
Leadership team

Mathias Döpfner ( CEO and Chairman of the Management Board)

Ralph Büchi (Chairman of the Supervisory Board)

Julian Deutz ( Chief Financial Officer (CFO))

Stephanie Caspar (President News Media)

Jan Bayer ( President News Media International)


Media and Communications

Products/ Services
Media Brands Digital Platforms Classified Portals Affiliate Marketing International Expansion
Number of Employees
1,000 - 20,000
Berlin, Germany
Company Registration
Social Media

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