International job portal StepStone invests millions in brand building

March 4, 2020
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International jobs portal StepStone, recently launched a new ad campaign in Germany, and its slogan is “Step, step, hooray!” (Step, step, hurra!). Rolled out at the beginning of 2020, the promotion is intended to distinguish StepStone from its competitor, indeed. So far the campaign has been very well received by the public.

KKR & Co. Inc., the American global investment firm that manages multiple alternative asset classes, including private equity, energy, infrastructure, real estate, among others, is behind StepStone's increased exposure. Last year, the US investor acquired a 42.5 percent stake in the Axel Springer media group whose 100 percent subsidiary is StepStone.

Although brands such as Bild and Welt are undergoing drastic revamping, StepStone as well as other digital classifieds, are winners amongst the new ownership structure, since KKR does not want to only save, but also invest. "This year we are spending a high double-digit million amount on advertising," said Sebastian Dettmers, Head of StepStone, the Handelsblatt Group. "According to recent research, every other employee in Germany is dissatisfied with their job. StepStone places approximately one million candidates in new jobs every year," added Dettmers.

Many vacancies

Before becoming Head of StepStone, Dettmer held the Managing Director position for eight years at the company. His predecessor Ralf Baumann transferred to the Aviv Group within the Springer Group, where the digital real estate portals are located. There are plans to expand both segments in the future.

StepStone employs around 3,600 people worldwide, including 700 in Düsseldorf. The jobs portal not only wants to help other companies find talent, but also needs support in filling vacancies.

When North Rhine-Westphalia's Minister of Economic Affairs Andreas Pinkwart (FDP) visited StepStone's headquarters earlier this week, Dettmers campaigned for a better location policy. "We want more attention for the region," he said. Many young tech experts would still rather go to Berlin than stay in the Rhineland.

"StepStone uses tech with artificial intelligence for job placement. A thousand employees work in the field of big data and machine learning alone. StepStone shows how A.I. can be used efficiently to get the right people in the right places," said Pinkwart.

Over 60 thousand companies successfully use StepStone job boards to recruit qualified specialists and executive staff. Founded in 1996, StepStone is one of the most successful online job board businesses today. The company operates over 10 top brands and claims to have 72 million visits and nearly 9 million jobs per month.

March 4, 2020

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