[caption id="attachment_56012" align="alignleft" width="422"] Axel Springer CEO Mathias Döpfner (left) and Chairman Dr Giuseppe Vita speaking at this week's AGM[/caption]
German media giant Axel Springer SE is realising the upside of its investment in Retale, a location-based mobile advertising platform for retailers and brands. On the back of overall growth, it announced a record dividend at this week's AGM.
One of the world's largest digital publishers in terms of reach, Axel Springert is Retale's majority stakeholder. This year, it is planned to invest a low double-digit million dollar amount in Retale, further accelerating the platform's scale and success.
At the group's Annual General Meeting this week CEO Mathias Döpfner announced Axel Springer would pay a record dividend of EUR 194.2 million.
The 2015 financial year saw the company increase total revenues by 8.5 per cent to EUR 3,294.9 million and EBITA by 10.2 per cent to EUR 559.0 million. EBITDA margin improved by 17.0 per cent.
The current financial year is bringing the group further growth in revenues and earnings. But Döpfner says Axel Springer can achieve more.
"We'll make use of our economic strength for investments in future growth and a further improvement in our results," he says. "At the same time we have raised the dividends payout for the past financial year to a record level of EUR 194 million.”
Axel Springer President, USA Jens Müffelmann says the US has become a core foreign market for Axel Springer, attracting more than a dozen investments and acquisitions including Retale.
"Retale is of high strategic relevance to Axel Springer since it accounts for our largest organic investment in the US," Müffelmann says.
"The way retailers, agencies and brands approach retail marketing has changed. Today, success means reaching shoppers wherever they are, on whatever device they may be using. Increasingly, that means smartphones and tablets.
"Retale, is at the forefront of that evolution and we are pleased to support them as they continue to grow."
Recent Retale milestones in the US include over 6.5 million downloads, a 110 per cent increase, year-over-year, compared to 2015, along with two billion in-app engagements across its growing user base.
Additionally, Retale President Pat Dermody says the platform is now delivering contextually relevant, location-based ads, deals, coupons and information from more than 125,000 retail stores nationwide.
"These milestones speak to our platform's value for retailers, brands and marketers, but also to broader trends in shopping, overall," Dermody says.
"Today, 85 per cent of in-market shoppers use their smartphones to research and visit brick-and-mortar stores.
"Mobile devices are the new personal shopping assistant and we offer a unique solution -- a location-based, mobile-first advertising platform that helps retailers and brands connect with over six and a half million shoppers, driving them to stores nearby.
"We use mobile to accelerate the customer buying journey at every stage and, from our in-app engagement to our user growth, it is clear we are succeeding."
Founded in October of 2013, Retale aims to reinvent the way shoppers consume information from stores and brands.
It allows shoppers to discover and receive great savings through ads and coupons, as well as get up-to-date store information through Retale's mobile app and website.
All information is location-based, making it possible for shoppers to find the best offers on products at the most convenient location for them. Hundreds of the world's top retailers and brands currently use Retale's platform, including JCPenney, Big Lots, Target and Toys "R" Us.