What we are and what we want

  1. We are and will remain a publisher, a house of journalism
  2. We want to inform, advise and entertain our readers independently and better than others
  3. We are and we want to be economically successful
  4. We are actively shaping digitization and see this as our great opportunity
  5. We do what we do with passion and are constantly striving to become even better
  6. We attract individualists and really promote them
  7. We are strengthening freedom, democracy and open minds

The soul and spirit of the company Axel Springer is journalism. We serve our readers with independent and critical information and advice as well as good entertainment. Through our media offerings we are making a contribution to the strengthening of freedom and democracy. The prerequisite for this is our economic success. We are working every day to improve our journalistic, technological and commercial competence.

Our Mission:
The successful establishment of independent journalism in the digital world.

Our goal:
We want to become the leading digital publisher.

Axel Springer is pursuing a strategy of profitable growth. Our majority shareholder safeguards our independence. We are a publicly listed company and as such committed to the efficiency and transparency requirements of the capital market. However, we do not restrict our selfimage to economic success alone.

We know: Profit is not everything, but without profit everything is nothing.

We want to create value. Material and non-material value.

We want to increase the value of our company. In addition to the operating earnings (EBITDA), earnings per share is the key indicator against which we measure ourselves and against which we can be measured. At the same time we want to strengthen the values of freedom, democracy, the rule of law, competition, property, human rights, cosmopolitanism and tolerance through our journalistic work.

Our publishing house is committed to the values of its founder Axel Springer. He stood first and foremost for freedom. It is in this sense that the five principles of the company are defined: the consolidation of German and European unity, support of the vital rights of the Israeli people, solidarity in the common values of free nations with the United States of America, upholding of the principles of a free social market economy and the rejection of all forms of political totalitarianism. These values do not prescribe the support of any ideology, government or political party, but rather they also allow and call, as does any true loyalty, for honest criticism.

Criticism and self-criticism are also a part of our overall corporate culture. Three values are decisive here: Creativity, Entrepreneurial spirit, Integrity.

We see the digital transformation of society and of our business as an opportunity, which we are shaping actively: without fear of self-cannibalization and without dividing into analog and digital camps. All of our employees are responsible for the success of digitization.

Our company is divided into three segments, which are based on journalism or benefit from journalism to varying degrees.

  1. Paid models These are all business models that are predominantly funded by paying readers.
  2. Marketing models These are all business models that are predominantly funded by paying advertising customers.
  3. Classified ad models These are all business models that are predominantly funded by paying job, real estate or auto advertising customers.

The traditional revenues of a publisher are reflected in this structure. In the same way as a newspaper in the past was financed by subscribers, advertisers and classified advertising customers. We have become the leading digital publisher when we are number one in our respective market segments and in the countries in which we are active.

Axel Springer is an international company. Our core market is Europe. We also want to be successful in growth markets such as India, Brazil, Asia and the United States of America. We do not do business in non-democratic countries on principle.

In our dealings with each other, we want to experience what we have collectively defined as socio-political objectives. Freedom demands a culture of trust, not of mistrustful control. We measure the success of our employees by their results, not by their presence. We encourage entrepreneurs in the company. We organize the publisher as an operative holding company – as centralized as necessary and as decentralized as possible. All brands, business divisions and services develop into independent companies, which hold together in spite of their differences like members of a family.

Technological competence has increasing importance in a digital publisher. For this reason we promote innovative technology, yet the core of our house remains journalism.

We do what we do for our readers and customers. But reader and customer orientation does not mean courtesy journalism or ingratiation.

We defend editorial independence as our most precious asset. Independent, critical, and thereby credible journalism is the best service we can provide all of our readers and customers.

We want to work quickly and unbureaucratically. Those who undertake entrepreneurial risks are rewarded for doing so, even if they do make a mistake.

We promote the diversity of gender, nationality, religion, sexual orientation, age and personality.

We treat every employee as we would like to be treated ourselves: respectfully and affectionately.

Axel Springer is a commercial enterprise, in which individualists feel at ease, because they have the freedom to make their own decisions and to shape things independently. A kind of „United Artists“. Artists – irrespective of whether they are reporters or software developers – are independent, different and sometimes complicated. They may and should be like this, as long as they are excellent and, when it matters, hold together – United.

We are passionate and have the desire to discover new things, to change and to improve ourselves. We want to be successful, to do good and to have fun.

And we know that everything defined here describes a goal, but regrettably not yet always and everywhere, reality. This is what we want to change.


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