German publisher Axel Springer to buy US news site Politico
Germany publishing giant Axel Springer has inked a deal to buy US website Politico as it beefs up its portfolio of digital news brands.
The deal will also see the Berlin-based business acquire the 50 per cent of Politico Europe it does not already own, as well as tech news website Protocol.
The two sides did not disclose the value of the deal, but the New York Times previously reported the takeover could value Politico at up to $1bn.
Politico was founded ahead of the 2008 presidential election by a group of defectors from the Washington Post with the aim of covering US politics with the pace and analysis of sports journalism.
Owner Robert Allbritton will continue as the publisher of the website following the transaction, which is expected to close by the end of the year.
The editorial and management leadership teams of all the outlets will also remain in place.
The merger is the latest digital shift by Axel Springer as major investor KKR looks to build up its portfolio of digital and media assets.
The company took over Business Insider in 2015 and bought a majority stake in newsletter platform Morning Brew last year.
It also owns a range of high-profile German publications including Bild and Welt and is active in more than 40 countries.
“It will be a privilege and a special responsibility to help shape the future of this outstanding media company,” said Mathias Doepfner, chief executive of Axel Springer.
“Objective quality journalism is more important than ever, and we mutually believe in the necessity of editorial independence and nonpartisan reporting. This is crucial for our future success and accelerated growth.”