Sanoma Media Finland is to buy a majority stake in the Finnish news agency STT after announcing it will buy the stakes held by legacy newspaper firms Alma Media and Turun Sanomat, bringing the Sanoma stake up from 33 percent to 75.4 percent.
“We genuinely believe that there is a need and demand for a Finnish news agency,” said Sanoma Media Finland CEO Pia Kalsta in a statement. “Over the summer we’ll thoroughly investigate customer needs and then build a sustainable base for operations.”
Sanoma Media Finland is part of the Sanoma group, which has operations in 10 countries and covers media, through Sanoma Media, and education materials, through Sanoma Learning.
Alma Media and Turun Sanomat will remain STT customers for now. Sanoma’s biggest newspaper Helsingin Sanomat, which put a heavy dent in STT cashflow when it stopped buying text services from STT in 2015.
Yle had similarly stopped buying the rights to use STT newswire stories in 2006 but returned to the company in 2017 after recommendations from an MPs working group.
Besides Sanoma the second biggest owner of STT will in future be Keskisuomalainen, the Central Finland newspaper group, with 6 percent. Yle owns 1.7 percent of STT shares.
STT was founded in 1887 and has some 120 staff members.