South African e-commerce and media firm Naspers will be selling its Polish operations; including Allegro, which currently bigger than ebay in the region. Word has it that Poland’s largest web portals Wp.pl and Onet.pl among potential bidders. Onet.pl is controlled by Ringier Axel Springer — German publisher Axel Springer’s joint venture with Swiss Ringier.
Allegro is the largest company in the 30-billion zloty ($8.2 billon) Polish e-commerce market. Naspers bought it in 2007 for 946 million pounds ($1.44 billion) and used the Allegro model in the Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Ukraine, or Russia.
Its Polish operations also include smaller web auctioneers, Internet price comparison services and messaging service Gadu-Gadu.
Allegro is in restructuring mode, planning to focus on its core businesses. On Tuesday it sold its business portals operator Bankier.pl to the Polish unit of Swedish publishing group Bonnier for an undisclosed sum.
Naspers is Africa’s biggest company by market value. It has e-commerce interests across dozens of countries, with stakes in Russian social network Mail.ru and Chinese Internet portal Tencent.
By focusing on e-commerce and media operations in emerging markets, Cape Town-based Naspers has transformed itself from an apartheid-era newspaper publisher into a 60 billion US dollars media and Internet giant.