Bieler Tagblatt sold to the Mengis Group of Valais

The Biel-based media group Gassmann, which among other things publishes the Bieler Tagblatt, is sold to the Valais entrepreneur Fredy Bayard. He has been the owner of the Mengis Group in Visp with the Valais Messenger for three years.


The sale to Bayard was not made for economic reasons, but for family reasons, as publisher Marc Gassmann emphasized to the media in Biel on Friday. A succession solution within the family had not been possible. As he is now over 70 years old, he considered it his duty to secure the future of his company.

There had been various interested parties, Gassmann explained. The Valais entrepreneur Fredy Bayard best met the requirements. Gassmann, who has been managing the Seeland-based company in the seventh generation since 1992, described the sale as a "stroke of luck," according to the press release.


Continue and further develop

Bayard emphasized that with Groupe Gassmann he was taking over a healthy company that was firmly anchored in the region and that he wanted to continue and further develop together with the Gassmann team.

Bieler Tagblatt, Journal du Jura and the other print, online and electronic media of the Gassmann Group will continue unchanged for the time being. Both parties have agreed not to disclose the purchase price. The change of ownership will take effect on January 1, 2021.


Anchored in the Seeland for 170 years

The publishing house Gassmann with the Bieler Tagblatt has been anchored in the Biel and Seeland region since 1850. Today, the company employs around 240 people in print, print, online and electronic media, as well as in administration, marketing and sales.

Besides Bieler Tagblatt, the Journal du Jura and the magazine Terre & Nature Gassmann also owns the local radio station Canal 3, and shares half of the local TV station Telebielingue with Biel media entrepreneur Mario Cortesi.

Fredy Bayard and his wife built up the Bayard fashion group in Valais. This has expanded strongly in recent years and now operates branches in numerous Swiss cities, including Biel.

At the beginning of 2018, Bayard became the majority shareholder in the Mengis Group in Upper Valais. This includes, in addition to the Valais Messenger including the local radio station Rottu. (SDA)

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