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Cover
Table of contents
Passion for media Media with passion
This is De persgroep
De Persgroep 2016 in brief
Foreword of the CEO
Foreword of the Board of Directors
A year in the life of De persgroep
Opportunities for the future
Most striking events in 2016
Business-to-business
Whoever wants to stay in the game has to transform
Financial result 2016
Contact
 
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The Magic of Media

Annual Report 2016

“Dag Allemaal is my favourite form of relaxation”

Eline Peeters

Reader of Dag Allemaal - Antwerp (Belgium)

“Tweakers is the technology website”

Randal Peelen

Fan of Tweakers - Castricum (The Netherlands)

“We want to excel in clarity”

Dimitri Antonissen

Editor in chief Het Laatste Nieuws

“Every day we try to assess what´s happening”

Pieter Klok

Deputy editor of the Volkskrant

Foreword of the CEO

The adventure of the future

CEO Christian van Thillo

“Our shareholders are committed for the long term, and sustainable success takes precedence over everything else.”

Christian Van Thillo - CEO

2016 was a very good year for De Persgroep. Vigorous expansion in a market that is rapidly changing is always a risky undertaking, and that is precisely why I am so proud of what we achieved last year. The increase in scale brought about by the integration of the Dutch publishing house Wegener and the Danish media company Berlingske proved to be a great success, we kept the focus on our existing media and we also continued to work hard on innovation and digital development. That all of this generated strong financial results only makes the picture that much better.

Read the complete foreword

Passion for media

Media company De Persgroep offers news media, magazines, television, radio, online services and telecom on the international, national and local levels. It has over 5,000 employees working in the Netherlands, Belgium and Denmark.

The group is composed of De Persgroep Nederland, De Persgroep Publishing, Medialaan, Qmusic, Mediafin and Berlingske Media.

Almost thirty years after it was founded, the five motives behind the media company – Passion, People, Powerbrands, Profit & Progress – are still as relevant as ever.

Discover our company results
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2016

Most striking events

Belgium

News and financial media, magazines, radio, television and online: in Belgium, De Persgroep has a leading position for a wide range of media. Characteristic is always an innovative and multimedia approach in which the media consumer plays the central role.

Netherlands

In the Netherlands, De Persgroep is an ambitious publisher of national and local news brands. The portfolio consists of over 140 different titles, including daily and weekly newspapers, magazines, websites, apps and the radio station Qmusic. Together they account for 9.3 million contact moments per day.

Denmark

De Persgroep is active in Denmark with Berlingske Media. The portfolio contains four news brands: Berlingske, BT, Metroxpress and Weekendavisen. Sweetdeal, Marketsquare and Radio24syv also form part of Berlingske Media.

Dimitri Antonissen
Dimitri Antonissen
“I remember above all the excellent journalistic work of our HLN editorial staff in 2016. It was a turbulent year: terrorist attacks, Brexit, Trump... Our newspaper editorial staff and online news team complemented one another seamlessly and in this way scored on speed, content, completeness and clarity. Until no fewer than 2.7 million unique visitors found their way to hln.be on those important news days! This made hln.be the uncontested market leader in the field of digital news provision. We want to excel in clarity. For complex dossiers and everyday stories. In addition, we have an eye for emotion. Not sensationalism, but we give our readers the story behind the facts.” “Another fun fact: in 2016 in Belgium, HLN was the fourth most searched-for term in Google, after Facebook, YouTube and Hotmail. In 2017 extra attention is going to online videos. In 2016 we sent video reporters out to experiment, so we now know what works and what doesn´t. If something happens in your region, you´ll see the first pictures on hln.be.”
Dimitri Antonissen
Editor in chief Het Laatste Nieuws
Gert Verpeet
Gert Verpeet
“Familie, Flanders’ very first daily TV series when it began in 1991, isn´t just a soap opera. The programme has grown into a daily portion of fiction, a permanent anchor point in VTM´s programming schedule.” “For many viewers it has literally become a ´family moment´: the parents and kids all comfortably installed in front of the TV set to follow the adventures of the Van den Bossche family. When young people go off to university and live in a rented room or a dormitory, they continue watching Familie via the VTM app. So for many people it’s a fixed element of everyday life.” “The unmasking of June´s murderer and the Christmas episode on the occasion of the 25th anniversary of Familie were undoubtedly the high points of 2016. In addition, we made several striking changes: we beefed up the cast with newcomers like Kürt Rogiers and Lien Van de Kelder, we started using better recording techniques, and the writing team was renewed. The result is that the viewer figures - even after a quarter century - are still growing every month. That motivates us - and it shows that Familie is ready for at least another 25 years!”
Gert Verpeet
Managing director TV-Bastards
Hille van der Kaa
Hille van der Kaa
“BN DeStem is the regional news medium for West-Brabant and Southwest Netherlands. A region with a lot of contrasts, and that makes it a fascinating challenge for us.” “2016 was the year of digitisation. We did some great online projects, with Serious Request as the high point. During this solidarity action, DJ´s are locked up in a glass house for six days. At the end of 2016 that house was located in Breda. Eight reporters from BN DeStem reported on it 24 hours a day – online and offline. A real success.” “In 2017 we´re putting even more into our online presence. In the first three months we want to grow digitally by 25 percent. We´re also continuing our collaboration with the other regional newspapers. We present stories that transcend the region. By going forward together, we make the message even better.”
Hille van der Kaa
Editor-in-chief BN DeStem
Jørgen Ramskov
Jørgen Ramskov
“Radio24syv is a Danish talk radio station with debates on current events, designed to inform, inspire and engage the listeners. Since 2011 we have been broadcasting day and night. Our ambition is to reinvent classic talk radio so that we reach more young people.” “2016 was a successful year for Radio24syv. Our weekly audience grew by 25 percent, to 500,000 listeners. Many people also listen to our programmes on demand: over three million programmes in December. In addition, our social media channels enjoyed a breakthrough. The number of views on Facebook rose by 66 percent. Our daily satirical show The Short Radio News received the award for best radio programme of 2016.”
Jørgen Ramskov
Editor-in-chief Radio24syv
Kees Reinders
Kees Reinders
“In the Netherlands we have paper media from the White House to the town hall. But online you still couldn´t follow what was taking place around the corner from you. Therefore we launched the website indebuurt. Pilot projects are running right now in Delft, Utrecht and Dordrecht. In 2017 we´re rolling out indebuurt in 20 cities throughout the Netherlands.” “On indebuurt residents find hyperlocal news and a business guide. We want to inspire. The visitor discovers the latest restaurants, the most beautiful walks and the most enjoyable playgrounds. It encourages them to explore their village or community. 22 percent of the articles are written in collaboration with companies from the neighbourhood.” “Almost 50 percent of the visitors end up on our website via social media. Residents inform other readers about interesting articles or facts. This is very interesting for local businesses, naturally, because in this way they get a low-threshold platform to highlight their products and services for the neighbourhood residents.”
Kees Reinders
Director Local Sales
Martin Krasnik
Martin Krasnik
“Weekendavisen is slow food for the mind, a weekly newspaper that appears on Friday with stories on politics, culture, literature and science. Denmark´s most penetrating newspaper for literally all ages – because we also have a children´s supplement.” “2016 was certainly successful. More readers, more single-copy sales and more advertisement revenues, thus a strong result. 2016 also happened to be the year I was appointed editor in chief. I find myself at the start of a fantastic adventure, and I´m genuinely looking forward to spoiling our readers with ever better journalism.” “Although most other Danish newspapers are busy moving fully into digitisation, our focus lies on the quality of the editorial content. My first and most important task for the coming months is thus to get to know all the employees and make our editorial staff even more outstanding.”
Martin Krasnik
Editor in chief Weekendavisen
Pieter Klok
Pieter Klok
“As a newspaper, you mustn´t unthinkingly follow what´s trending on Twitter. Above all you have to follow your own nose, rely on your own judgement, never tag along behind someone else. At the Volkskrant we go our own way, always with the focus on our readers. Every day we try to assess what´s happening in the Netherlands, what´s really important out there and what issues our readers are struggling with. We do so critically, sharply and with a healthy dose of self-perspective. People appreciate that: we´re growing in an otherwise shrinking market. Our readers are socially involved, but at the same time love the beautiful things in life and like a good joke.” “In order to also reach the younger generations and inform our existing subscribers in new ways, we´re working on a new digital newspaper and we´re busy experimenting with online video. Volkskrant readers are more and more readily finding their way to the Kijk Verder platform, where we offer short online videos that give background information to the big stories. Sometimes serious, sometimes light-hearted, and here as well: always following our own nose.”
Pieter Klok
Deputy editor of the Volkskrant
Sean Dhondt
Sean Dhondt
“In 2016, DANCEMBER definitely stood out. For a whole month I went looking for the best dance music with the help of Goose. The high point came on December 30th with DANCEMBER NIGHT in the cellar of Medialaan. A great party! We´re already working on a second edition.” “Also new is our Q app, with which listeners follow live radio broadcasts of Qmusic, and they can watch and rewatch TV programmes of Q2. The third app element is You, with personalised info. Such as news about your favourite band and terrific quotes from your favourite programmes.” “Personally I´m looking forward in 2017 to the legendary adventure programme Peking Express, with duos that go hitchhiking across Asia. And I have the honour of presenting it on Q2. I love the excitement of the race. But sometimes everything grows quiet, and one can appreciate the beauty of nature or the hospitality of the local inhabitants… Be sure to watch!”
Sean Dhondt
Qmusic DJ and Q2 presenter
Sophie Keyzer
Sophie Keyzer
“The power of Qmusic resides in its listeners. As music director - the world’s most enjoyable job! - I´m busy every day putting the listeners at the centre, drawing up a playlist that makes people happy. It´s no accident that the slogan is: You Make Us Q. Since recently on Friday afternoons you hear the Q25, a hit list composed by our listeners.” “In 2016 we organised the 11th edition of the Foute Party, a crazy celebration with 36,000 people attending. A record number! The Qubes were a success again this year too. These are intimate live sessions where major artists like Ed Sheeran, Bastille, Robbie Williams and John Legend have already appeared. Thanks to the small setting, the fans are just a few metres from their idol.”
Sophie Keyzer
Qmusic music director
Some

Figures

Ebitda
225 million euros
Operational free cash flow
108 million euros
Online Services
10% revenue growth
Every day
4.7 million visitors on all our websites
A year in the life of De Persgroep
Download the Annual Report 2016 (PDF)