Politico sale to German publisher confirmed

Arlington, Virginia-based Politico will be acquired by German publisher Axel Springer for an undisclosed sum.

Berlin-based Axel Springer’s newspapers include Bild and Die Welt. Axel Springer also owns Business Insider and Morning Brew. It already has a joint venture with Politico operating Politico Europe, which the two launched in 2014.

Politico was founded in 2007 by Washington Post veterans and was backed and is still owned by broadcast news veteran Robert Allbritton.

“My 15-year adventure with Politico has been the ride of a lifetime,” Allbritton said in a statement. “Together we have built what is without a doubt the most impressive and most enduring of the many experiments in new publications over the past generation.”

Allbritton will continue as Politico publisher, and current editorial and management leadership will remain unchanged.

Axel Springer Chief Executive Mathias Doepfner said Politico’s staff had “disrupted digital political journalism and set new standards.”

The acquisition also includes Protocol, a tech news site Politico launched in 2020.

The sale still needs regulatory approval. It is expected to close in the fourth quarter of 2021.

Jeff Clabaugh

Jeff Clabaugh has spent 20 years covering the Washington region's economy and financial markets for WTOP as part of a partnership with the Washington Business Journal, and officially joined the WTOP newsroom staff in January 2016.

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