1 & 1 umbrella group United Internet needs money to push ahead with the planned 5G network expansion. As a result, the two internet portals GMX and Web.de are to be sold to create financial resources.
GMX and Web.de for sale
Montabaur-based United Internet AG owns many brands. Among them, in addition to mobile provider 1 & 1 just also the mail providers and Internet portals GMX and Web.de, as well as, for example, hosting provider Strato.
At the moment, the company is busy launching its own 1 & 1 mobile network and is investing several billion euros in the construction. The move, however, is not expected to be completed until 2025, as one had revealed in April 2022.
Nearly five billion euros, however, had already been invested in acquiring the frequencies, as well as the contracts for the expansion of fiber optic lines, antennas and services. However, it is precisely this project that is apparently gobbling up more resources, which is why United Internet now apparently wants to sell GMX and Web.de. That’s according to a report in the Handelsblatt.
1.5 billion euros for United Internet
According to Handelsblatt, the information comes from financial and industry circles. The sale of GMX and Web.de could flush an additional 1.5 billion euros into United Internet’s coffers.
Potential buyers can bid for both a minority and a majority stake in both portals, according to insiders. This clearly shows that the two German portals, which were launched in the 1990s, are to be sold – as quickly as possible and in whatever form.
In addition to free and e-mail services, GMX and Web.de offer numerous other services and are now also popular news portals. Web.de in particular is said to have been the web portal with the widest reach in 2005 and was sold to United Internet AG on October 31, 2005 for a purchase price of around 330 million euros.
The funds from the sale of both portals are to flow into the development of the new 1 & 1 mobile network. The aim here is to become independent of the three major providers, Deutsche Telekom, Vodafone and Telefónica.
Around 1,000 base stations are to be made available for 1&1 mobile communications by the end of 2022, and mobile 5G support is to be available from mid-2023. The fourth dedicated mobile network for Germany is then expected to be launched from summer 2023. However, full completion could still take until 2025.