Bertelsmann

A media, services and education company operating in over 50 countries

Headquartered in Gütersloh, Germany, the Bertelsmann portfolio includes the broadcaster RTL Group, trade book publisher Penguin Random House, magazine publisher Gruner + Jahr, music company BMG, the service provider Arvato, the Bertelsmann Printing Group, the Bertelsmann Education Group and Bertelsmann Investments, an international fund network.

The company was established in 1835, with the Bertelsmann Stiftung, a nonprofit foundation, and the Mohn family as shareholders today. The education sector was recently named a third income pillar for Bertelsmann, in addition to its existing media and services businesses.

Bertelsmann Markenarchitektur

Company Profile

Bertelsmann SE & Co. KGaA is a capital market-oriented, unlisted partnership limited by shares. As a corporate holding, it handles central Group functions such as corporate strategy development, capital allocation, financing, and management development. The company’s internal governance and reporting reflect its corporate structure, which consists of the operating divisions as well as Corporate Investments and the Corporate Center.

RTL Group – Quality Entertainment on all Channels

RTL Group is a leader across broadcast, content and digital, with interests in 67 television channels, 10 streaming platforms and 38 radio stations. RTL Group also produces content throughout the world and owns a digital video network. The television portfolio of Europe’s largest broadcaster includes RTL Television in Germany, M6 in France, the RTL channels in the Netherlands, Belgium, Luxembourg, Croatia, Hungary and Antena 3 in Spain. RTL Group’s families of TV channels are either the number one or number two in eight European countries.
The group’s flagship radio station is RTL in France, and it also owns or has interests in other stations in France, Germany, Belgium, Spain and Luxembourg. RTL Group’s content business, Fremantle, is one of the world’s largest creators, producers and distributors of scripted and unscripted content. Combining the streaming services of its broadcasters (such as TV Now, 6play, Salto and Videoland), the digital video network Divimove, and Fremantle’s more than 360 YouTube channels, RTL Group has become the leading European media company in digital video.
RTL Group also owns the ad-tech businesses Smartclip and Yospace, as well as the streaming-tech company Bedrock. RTL AdConnect is RTL Group’s international advertising sales house.
Bertelsmann is the majority shareholder of RTL Group, holding 75 percent of its shares.

Penguin Random House – Number One in the World of Book Publishing

Penguin Random House, the world’s largest trade book publisher, is dedicated to its mission of nourishing a universal passion for reading by connecting authors and their writing with readers everywhere. The company employs more than 10,000 people globally. With more than 300 imprints and brands on six continents, Penguin Random House comprises adult and children’s fiction and nonfiction print and digital English-, German- and Spanish-language trade book publishing businesses in more than 20 countries worldwide. With over 15,000 new titles and more than 600 million print, audio and e-books sold annually, Penguin Random House’s publishing lists include more than 80 Nobel Prize laureates and hundreds of the world’s most widely read authors.
Penguin Random House is wholly owned by Bertelsmann.

The German-language Verlagsgruppe Random House in Munich is not part of Penguin Random House from a legal point of view, but is under the same corporate management and is part of the Penguin Random House division.

Gruner + Jahr – Page after Page of Quality Journalism

Gruner + Jahr is one of Europe’s leading premium magazine publishers. Its products include established brands such as “Stern,” “Geo,” “Brigitte,” “Essen & Trinken” and “Schöner Wohnen” – as well as younger brands including “Chefkoch,” “Barbara,” “Beef” and “11 Freunde.” In total, Gruner + Jahr publishes around 500 print and digital media products. It also markets products and licenses such as the “Schöner Wohnen” Collection. Digital business makes up a quarter of sales, and is exhibiting continued strong growth. Indeed, the company’s digital products lead the rankings in all publishing segments, from news to people to living. G+J also operates the international digital marketing platform AppLike Group and holds shares in online native advertising market leader Outbrain. Territory, Germany’s largest communications agency for brand content, is a member of the G+J family. Other members include DDV Mediengruppe in Dresden (“Sächsische Zeitung”).
G+J also holds a stake in Spiegel-Gruppe (“Spiegel”, “Manager Magazin”).
Gruner + Jahr is wholly owned by Bertelsmann.

BMG – Home for Songwriters and Artists in the Digital Age

Founded in 2008, BMG is the world’s fourth-biggest music company. Creating a competitive advantage with its core values of fairness, transparency and service, BMG offers the traditionally separate music publishing and recording rights as well as production music, films, books, management, merchandise, neighboring rights and live. BMG’s 20 offices across 12 core music markets represent more than three million songs and recordings, including many of the most renowned and successful catalogs, artists and songwriters in popular music history. With its multi-platform perspective, integrated technology platform and commitment to add value to their careers, BMG aims to be the best partner for artists and songwriters.
BMG is wholly owned by Bertelsmann.

Arvato – One-Stop Everything

Arvato is an internationally active services company that develops and implements innovative solutions for business customers from around the world. These include SCM solutions, financial services and IT services, which are continuously developed with a focus on innovations in automation as well as data and analytics. Globally renowned companies from a wide variety of industries – from telecommunications providers and energy providers to banks and insurance companies, e-commerce, IT and Internet providers – rely on Arvato’s portfolio of solutions.
Arvato is wholly owned by Bertelsmann. The services business also includes the Majorel group of companies, in which Bertelsmann owns 50 percent of shares.

Bertelsmann Printing Group – A Printing Powerhouse

The Bertelsmann Printing Group (BPG) unites Bertelsmann’s printing and direct marketing activities. This includes the German offset printing companies Mohn Media, GGP Media and Vogel Druck; the Prinovis gravure printing operations in Germany and the United Kingdom; and offset and digital printing plants in the United States specializing in the production of books. The group combines a wide range of print and service offers. Campaign, DeutschlandCard and the Dialogue business are also part of BPG. The Bertelsmann division also includes the advertising agency MBS, RTV Media Group and Sonopress.
BPG is wholly owned by Bertelsmann.

Bertelsmann Education Group – Shaping Learning in the 21st Century

Bertelsmann Education Group comprises Bertelsmann’s education activities. The online education and service offerings are primarily in the healthcare and technology sectors, as well as in higher education. Activities include the online education provider Relias, a stake in Udacity, the US-based Alliant International University, as well as select venture fund investments.
The Bertelsmann Education Group is wholly owned by Bertelsmann.

Bertelsmann Investments – International Investment Platforms

Bertelsmann Investments (BI), Bertelsmann’s global venture capital arm, encompasses four funds: Bertelsmann Asia Investments (BAI), Bertelsmann India Investments (BII), Bertelsmann Brazil Investments (BBI) and Bertelsmann Digital Media Investments (BDMI, investing in the United States and Europe); as well as fund-of-fund investments in Southeast Asia and Africa, and funds with a focus on new technologies. So far, more than €1 billion has been invested in more than 250 innovative companies and funds through the Bertelsmann Investments division. The Bertelsmann Investments Digital Partners initiative facilitates collaboration between start-ups and all Bertelsmann divisions to drive the digitalization of the businesses.

Shareholder Structure

Bertelsmann SE & Co. KGaA is a privately held Kommanditgesellschaft auf Aktien (KGaA; partnership limited by shares). 80.9 percent of the capital shares in Bertelsmann SE & Co. KGaA are held indirectly by foundations (Bertelsmann Stiftung, Reinhard Mohn Stiftung, BVG-Stiftung), and 19.1 percent are held indirectly by the Mohn family.

All voting rights at the General Meeting of Bertelsmann SE & Co. KGaA and Bertelsmann Management SE (general partner) are controlled by Bertelsmann Verwaltungsgesellschaft (BVG).

The Mohn Family

The Bertelsmann / Mohn Family is the founding family of the company. The publisher C. Bertelsmann Verlag was founded by Carl Bertelsmann in 1835; Reinhard Mohn, in the fifth generation of the founding family, took over the management of the company in 1947. Under his leadership Bertelsmann developed from a medium-sized printing and publishing company into one of the largest internationally active media companies. Reinhard Mohn transferred a large part of his capital share in Bertelsmann AG (now Bertelsmann SE & Co. KGaA) to the Bertelsmann Stiftung in 1993. Today, the Mohn Family owns 19.1 percent of the capital shares in Bertelsmann SE & Co. KGaA.

Bertelsmann Verwaltungsgesellschaft mbH (BVG)

BVG’s mandate is to ensure continuity in Bertelsmann SE & Co. KGaA’s development and to manage the shareholder interests of the non-profit Bertelsmann Foundations and of the Mohn family. BVG is committed to safeguarding, implementing and enhancing the corporate culture developed by Reinhard Mohn. BVG controls 100 percent of the voting rights in the annual general meeting of Bertelsmann SE & Co. KGaA, which it exercises for these purposes as well as 100 percent of the voting rights in the annual general meeting of Bertelsmann Management SE.

Bertelsmann Stiftung

Bertelsmann Stiftung is an independent, non-profit foundation which identifies social problem areas for which it develops and implements solutions. Its projects focus on education, economic and social affairs, health and international understanding. The Bertelsmann Stiftung was founded in 1977 by Reinhard Mohn, the former Chief Executive Officer and owner of the majority share of Bertelsmann, in order to continue the socio-political, cultural and social commitment of the founding family, Bertelsmann / Mohn, and to guarantee the continuity of Bertelsmann. Towards this purpose, Reinhard Mohn transferred a large part of the capital share in Bertelsmann AG (now Bertelsmann SE & Co. KGaA) to the Bertelsmann Stiftung in 1993