The “Spotify” of news

Cafeyn, the leading French digital news aggregator for premium content, acquires the Dutch competitor Blendle

The Background For decades classic print media has been a popular access to premium journalism and content. The rise of social media has had a strong impact on this leadership and the demand for print media has been declining for years.

However, the digitalization of news and the media industry and the rise of alternative payment models, re-enhanced the willingness to pay for high-quality journalism and digital content. Companies, like Cafeyn and Blendle, have targeted this trend and are committed to creating a digital platform that provides access to quality journalism for everyone. The simplicity and flexibility of having a large selection of different magazines and daily newspapers bundled on one platform has proven to be especially popular with the younger digital-affine generation. The rise of digital content subscription models and new features such as AI-based reading recommendations, daily newsletters and audio podcasts complete this unique customer experience.

The Deal Cafeyn, the leading digital news aggregator in France acquires 100% of its Dutch counterpart Blendle. IEG – Investment Banking Group acted as exclusive financial advisor to Blendle and its shareholders. Stefan Heilmann, CEO at IEG, says about the deal: “With the acquisition of Blendle, Ari Assuied and Alexander Klöpping will create the European “Spotify” for premium news and audio content in partnership with the leading global and local publishing companies.”

The Partners Founded in 2014, Utrecht-based mobile app developer Blendle is the prime home for curated and aggregated journalistic content of premium quality. Facing slumping revenues in advertising globally, oftentimes even offsetting kiosk revenues, publishers are in severe difficulties of finding ways to monetize. Bringing the golden principles to news, e.g. aggregation, curation, UX focus, and unlimited content, Blendle addresses mobile customer needs and helps publishers grow again. Trusted by over 160 leading publishers in Benelux, Germany and the US, Blendle offers unmatched access to premium content, as articles and audio, in one app.

Blendle has developed a striking tech stack empowered by an editorial engine that makes use of data analytics, machine learning and automation to deliver the most relevant content to every user.

Since its creation in 2006, LeKiosk’s, now Cafeyn’s, ambition, driven by a deep passion for media, has been to reconnect readers to content that is relevant to them, by offering an ultra-high-performance platform, based on advanced technology and backed-up by a team of more than 90 professionals. With its expertise and a network of strategic partners, the platform offers hundreds of titles, news and magazines, accessible via mobile app or PC. Cafeyn is available in France, the United Kingdom, Italy, the Caribbean and Madagascar and aims to accelerate its international expansion over the next two years. Since its inception 14 years ago, Cafeyn has continued to rapidly innovate the way it promotes information streaming at a time when the industry is reinventing itself and the way the general public consumes information is changing.

The Perspective With the acquisition, Cafeyn is continuing its mission on becoming the leading European digital newspaper and magazine platform. It is particularly important to both companies that the best features of both companies are retained, which should lead to an even more unique product offering. Blendle’s CEO Alexander Klöpping: “We can’t wait to exchange features and to make our catalogues featuring over 2500 newspapers and magazines available to all. It allows us to become the home of the best pan-European journalism out there”.

Journalism is the core DNA of both companies. “Quality journalism is worth money. We’re in the midst of an important transition from advertising income to reader income. I’ll be focusing on executing that journalistic vision by joining the Cafeyn board, making way for Ari Assuied to lead the Cafeyn Group, including Blendle, as CEO,” adds Alexander Klöpping.