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DIE WELT launches new digital subscriptions with a payment model also for the website

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11.12.12

DIE WELT launches new digital subscriptions with a payment model also for the website

Subscription packages with website, apps, and WELT am SONNTAG / Print subscribers have free access to digital offerings

DIE WELT is introducing new subscription models for its digital offerings on 12 December 2012 and will be the first large German national news site to also launch a payment model for its previously freely accessible web page. With this step, Axel Springer is continuing the Premium Initiative it started in 2009 with the goal of providing successful paid offerings for its digital journalistic content.

For its website DIE WELT is building on a metered model based on the successful example of the "New York Times". Free access is given to users for up to 20 articles per month on DIE WELT Online. Users are required to purchase a subscription from the 21st article. The homepage remains free of charge. Articles which are linked to by search engines, social networks or other pages can also be read for free.

DIE WELT also offers a comprehensive brand subscription. All subscribers of a WELT Group newspaper are given unlimited access to the digital offerings, including the website and the apps for smartphones and tablet computers.

Jan Bayer, President WELT Group and Printing: "We are firmly convinced that a sustainable business model for journalistic offerings in the digital world should, in the same way as in the analog world, be based on circulation and advertising revenues. We are already very successful with regard to our advertising revenues, and now we want to develop our circulation revenues as a second pillar. We have been encouraged to do this through the successes of the WELT apps, as digital journalistic content is already being paid for through them. With regard to the website we are aware that we will need patience until a sustainable base of subscribers will be built up."

Romanus Otte, General Manager Digital WELT Group: "We believe that a metered model ideally suits DIE WELT's offering. We want to convince our readers through good offerings at reasonable prices and good service. However, being found and interconnected are also essential on the Internet. This is why we are deliberately remaining open for searches and linking."

Three subscription packages, designed to suit different media usage habits, are available for the launch:

  • DIE WELT DIGITAL Basic = Online plus smartphone app / 6.99 euros per month 
  • DIE WELT DIGITAL Complete = Online plus smartphone and tablet app / 12.99 euros per month
  • DIE WELT DIGITAL Plus WELT am SONNTAG = All digital offerings plus WELT am SONNTAG (print edition) / 14.99 euros per month

Each of the new packages can be tested for 99 cents in the first month.

Following the example of the "New York Times", DIE WELT is cooperating with a partner at the start of its payment model in order to make a special offer to its loyal users. The 50,000 heaviest users, who have read the most articles on DIE WELT Online in the 30 days prior to the launch, will profit from this cooperation with Bentley. Upon registration they will receive free access to DIE WELT Online for six months.