Refocused 24.com: good news for newspaper brands?
24.com, the largest and one of the most important South African digital media players, earlier this week announced a significant strategic move that will see it restructured and refocused. It will, in effect, move from being standalone to a division integrated with Media24 Newspapers.
It will exit the ecommerce field, with Kalahari.net moving to MIH Internet Africa along with listing business Careers24. 24Games, a mobile and web destination offering free online games, will move to DStv Online.
24.com operates a number of high profile websites, including news24.com, Fin24.com, Food24.com, Gotravel24.com, Health24.com, Sport24.co.za Sport24.co.za, Wheels24.co.za and Women24.com.
At this stage the unit’s reporting line to Media24’s management team, of which Farinha was a member, remains unclear. According to Cohen, it remains too early to tell whether 24.com will retain such a direct link to the Media24’s management board or whether it will be represented by Abraham van Zyl, CEO of Media24 Newspapers.
Social network developer Blueworld Communities stands out as a unit not naturally aligned with 24.com’s publishing focus but, according to Cohen, negotiations with other shareholders (the other units that were moved around were wholly owned) as to the unit’s future haven’t yet been concluded.
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