This week 476 media outlets became parts of the new Hungarian media holding controlled by pro-government forces. The name of the mammoth is Central European Press and Media Foundation (in Hungarian: Közép-európai Sajtó- és Média Alapítvány). This infographic shows you what happened!
This article was originally published by Átlátszó.hu, a watchdog NGO and online newspaper in Hungary.
Two important announcements were made on Wednesday. First, it was revealed that PM Orban’s close friend, Lőrinc Mészáros further expanded his portfolio: he bought media outlets owned by Austrian businessman Heinrich Pecina, a company owned by László Puch and also media outlets owned by casino magnate and film commissioner Andy Vajna, as well as Gábor Liszkay.
Shortly after it was also announced that Mészáros is ’donating’ all his media companies to the Central European Press and Media Foundation. Next, the Foundation revealed that owners of Echo TV, Figyelő, 888.hu, Lokál, Ripost and Origo.hu also ’offered’ their media outlets to the foundation.
This means that important pro-government businessmen including Mészáros, Vajna, Mária Schmidt and Árpád Habony gave up their media portfolios. Vajna was allowed to keep his radio network and his TV channel, TV2, is not part of the new holding, either.With this move, the Central European Press and Media Foundation might become the biggest media holding in Europe. When all the deals are finalized, the Foundation will own 476 media outlets.
We updated our infographic from the beginning of the year to show you how the ownership of these outlets changed.