The 2018 financial year has proved a success for Hubert Burda Media. With consolidated external turnover of €2.664 billion, the company has repeated the previous year’s result.
5 September, 9.30 a.m., Representation of the Free State of Bavaria to the EU: The starting signal for the third DLD Europe Conference in Brussels in front of around 300 participants was given by DLD founder Steffi Czerny with thoughtful, but no less motivating words of welcome. The continuing power of the large US technology companies, the increasing influence of Chinese internet giants and the difficult transatlantic relations are very stressful for Europe. "Nevertheless, we believe in the European Union, the vision of a united Europe and the economic strength of our continent," said Czerny. The aim of today's DLD conference is to recharge the European idea with more optimism and provide an open, interdisciplinary discussion platform for opinion leaders, decision-makers and disruptors.
Freedom and European excellence
"The big tech monopolists are destroying smaller companies. And data collectors are destroying our democracy," former EU Commissioner Viviane Reding proclaimed in the panel about Freedom on the Internet. Freedom is essential for Europe's competitiveness and one has to stop thinking "small, small" all the time. This will only be possible through a joint shoulder-to-shoulder approach, a global plan for Europe. Her wake-up call: "Let's bring the talents back to Europe and invest here!” Burda board member Stefan Winners almost agreed with her, but was much more optimistic. "Digital education has become an essential part of European universities. This enables us to better train talented people directly here in Europe," said Winners.
Artificial intelligence on the rise – without Europe?!
Europe has not yet lost the battle for Artificial Intelligence, but it needs to accelerate and prioritise significantly, said Ann Mettler, head of the European Political Strategy Centre. Paul Daugherty, CIO and CTO of Accenture, added: "The battle has not yet been lost, but the question is how quickly Europe can move forward and invest in this area". In terms of R&D (Research and Development), Europe is strong, but the major platforms are currently in the USA and China. "It will be very difficult for Europe to keep up at this level", says Daugherty.
GDPR as a game changer
100 days after the entry into force of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) Věra Jourová thinks that the issue of data protection has spread widely and that EU citizens feel they have better control over their data. GDPR is a game changer, not only for Europe, explained the commissioner for justice in the discussion with Burda board member Andreas Rittstieg. One year after the law came into force, however, it must be analysed and discussed in detail to what extent the law has actually achieved its planned effect.
1:1 with Germany’s leading media bosses
Is the golden age of journalism over? This was the central question with which presenter and former editor-in-chief of Bild Tanit Koch started the eagerly awaited meeting of CEOs Paul-Bernhard Kallen (Hubert Burda Media) and Mathias Döpfner (Axel Springer) at the end of the DLD Europe conference day in Brussels. "Democracy cannot survive without good journalism and vice versa," explained Burda CEO Paul-Bernhard Kallen. Further information on this panel will be available shortly on this blog.
Terrace talk of the influential
Following the DLD conference, around 500 guests from politics, business and the media gathered for the Burda...Summernight on the terraces of the "Kwint" restaurant with a view of the impressive scenery of the Grand Place. Burda CEO Paul-Bernhard Kallen as well as board members Philipp Welte, Andreas Rittstieg and Stefan Winners welcomed, among others, EU Budget Commissioner Günther H. Oettinger, Bavarian Digital Minister Georg Eisenreich, the designated German ambassador in Belgium, Martin Kotthaus, Axel Springer CEO Mathias Döpfner and Bernhard Mattes, President of the Association of the German Automotive Industry. Numerous Members of the European Parliament also appeared. Amongst them: Daniel Caspary, Axel Voss, Viviane Reding, David McAllister, Nadja Hirsch, Jens Gieseke, Bernd Lange as well as Tiemo Wölken.
Commitment to the European Publisher’s Right
With the European Publisher’s Right, one of the most hotly debated topics before the summerbreak is picking up speed again. The 5th of September was not only the date of this year's Burda...Summernight, but also the deadline for submitting amendments to the copyright report, which also contains the Publisher’s Right.
"For the first time, a Europe-wide ancillary copyright law offers a realistic chance that profits generated from the exploitation of journalistic content will be distributed more fairly in the digital value chain."
Philipp Welte, Burda CEO
Publishers continue to be the players who invest in high-quality journalistic content, while third parties such as search engines monetize this content without contributing in any way to its financing. "If the legislator does not finally set the right course to remedy the asymmetries in the monetization of journalistic content in the digital environment, it will not only endanger the free and independent press, but it will also lay hands on the fourth pillar of every true democracy and thus on the unique pluralism of the Western world," Welte said.