Dogan Holding Seeks Acquisitions in Media, Energy, E-Commerce

Dogan Sirketler Grubu Holding AS, the owner of the media company that runs CNN Turk, said it plans acquisitions in Turkey and abroad to build business in energy, media and e-commerce.

“Several acquisition works are progressing at the same time in media and energy so it’s difficult to tell which one will be the first,” Chairwoman Begumhan Dogan Faralyali said today in an interview. “Even in Turkey we have significant room for organic growth for media business.”

Dogan Holding, which owns Dogan Yayin Holding AS, Turkey’s biggest media company and operator of CNN Turk with Time Warner Inc., sold its stake in the country’s biggest fuel retailer, Petrol Ofisi AS, to OMV AG two years ago. It’s now considering assets in online and “traditional media” in countries in eastern Europe and the Middle East, Faralyali said.

The chairwoman spoke after Chief Executive Officer Yahya Uzdiyen said the parent company is aiming for 20 percent sales growth this year, excluding acquisitions. Dogan Holding’s revenue rose 10 percent to 3.16 billion liras ($1.77 billion) last year.

Dogan Holding gained as much as 4.6 percent to 1.13 liras in Istanbul, the highest intraday price since March 13. The stock was up 3.7 percent at 3:53 p.m.

Dogan is also preparing to bid in a government auction for operational rights to national lottery company Milli Piyango, Uzdiyen said at a news conference in Istanbul today. Dogan is in talks with a “foreign strategic company” for a possible joint bid, he said.

Profit Returns

The holding company returned to profit after a loss in 2011 due to the payment of back taxes. The finance ministry acted after company founder Aydin Dogan clashed with Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan over allegations in his newspapers that the government had financial links in Germany with Islamic charity Deniz Feneri, whose officials were convicted of fraud. The original fine was reduced through court cases and a government tax restructuring plan.

The company’s energy unit, Dogan Enerji AS, plans to increase production and bid in the government’s auctions to sell power plants, Uzdiyen said. Dogan Enerji started test production at a well in Northern Iraq in which it has a 20 percent stake and is seeking new exploration licenses in Yemen and other countries with partners. DNO International ASA is the main stakeholder in the Iraq venture.

“We get about 70 percent of our sales from media units but we want to increase the stake of energy and other businesses to about 50 percent in near future from 30 percent now,” Uzdiyen said.

Dogan Holding will make investments of more than 400 million liras this year, excluding possible acquisitions, after 925 million liras last year, the CEO said.

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