DMGT splashes £17m on three digital acquisitions

LONDON - The Daily Mail and General Trust has spent £17m on the acquisition of three websites including car dealer site Auto Exposure.

The car dealer site has been snapped up by DMGT, which owns Associated Newspapers, alongside two recruitment web firms.

In May Associated spent £46.5m buying dating website Allegran, and Data Media Retail, which owns Carsource.co.uk.

The acquisitions are part of its continuing strategy of making online investments and increasing its involvement in the online advertising market. All of the acquisitions will form part of the AN Digital network of online assets.

Auto Exposure provides car dealers with services to publish and advertise their vehicle inventory online. The acquisition builds upon the Daily Mail General Trust's recent acquisition of Carsource.co.uk.

Associated has also bought Interbase, which runs the TV and film industries recruitment website productionbase.co.uk, and the Appointment, which owns the retail recruitment sites inretail.co.uk and retailcareers.co.uk as well as the retail magazine The Appointment. Last year DMGT also bought Top-Consultant.com and Officerecruit.co.uk.

Associated will make initial payments of £12.3m for the three new acquisitions, which have a combined turnover of approximately £4.5m.

The acquisition follows a restructure of Associated Northcliffe Digital into a number of internal divisions. These include AN Digital Integrated Media, responsible for the digital channels of the group's newspaper brands, and AN Digital Publishing, responsible for existing and new assets in digital magazines, web services and new product development in areas such as online communities.

The restructure was led by managing director Andy Hart. It followed the merger of Associated New Ventures with Northcliffe Electronic Publishing to create Associated Northcliffe Digital.

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