Digital Media Company

Becoming increasingly digital

Global digital market
In the digital advertising market, international online platforms are still the most financially important competitors for the Baltic media houses. In 2023, the activities of large technology companies were again under the sharp scrutiny of international regulators. This is evidenced by the fact that Meta, the owner of Facebook, introduced a paid, ad-free subscription service for its European customers in October 2023, when customers are not willing accept advertising cookies. Essentially it means that the end user finds himself in a position where he must pay for the service either in cash or in personal data. Important changes also took place on the social media market, where Twitter, bought by Elon Musk in 2022, changed its name to X and introduced new digital subscription solutions to the market, thus contributing to the global growth of awareness of digital subscriptions. At the same time, the economic environment forces all service providers to increase the prices of their services due to the rapid growth of input prices, which in the long run makes the consumer more selective and the simultaneous consumption of several services decreases. Therefore, it can be assumed that users will become more loyal, and the turnover of subscribers will decrease.
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Digital subscriptions are still in a leadership position in all home markets
The steady growth of digital business affects all media organisations worldwide. In addition to the opportunities provided by new digital products, the challenge of retaining existing customers and finding new ones is even greater.
All media products of Ekspress Grupp are available in a digital format. Development of media portals for provision of the best digital services and products have always been of importance.
Other Ekspress Grupp companies also offer digital services and products. For example, Hea Lugu sells audio and e-books and manages e-stores Raamat24 and Digiread. Digital Matter offers automatic advertising solutions, Kinnisvara24, Biļešu Paradīze and Piletitasku are digital service platforms or marketplaces. Digital outdoor advertising solutions are offered by our screen companies D Screens in Latvia and Linna Ekraanid in Estonia.
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Effect of artificial intelligence on credibility of news and content
The technological focus in 2023 was artificial intelligence (AI) and the tools based thereon. Ekspress Grupp has taken into use several tools to ensure a more efficient internal work organisation. We are currently also testing solutions aimed at the end user, which should reach customers during 2024. We use artificial intelligence-based solutions daily to monitor and clean up comments, create images and illustrations for articles, process audio in podcasts, and edit videos faster. We use simpler code generation solutions in programming. At the same time, the companies of Ekspress Grupp, which offer artificial intelligence-based solutions to the end customer, have established internal principles for the use of artificial intelligence, the purpose of which is to inform users if something has been "artificially" compiled or modified.
The implications of artificial intelligence for the media sector are far-reaching. Artificial intelligence can be used to create personalised content that better matches the interests and preferences of viewers, and it can also help the media industry better understand its audience and predict trends and consumer behaviour.
Fake content created by artificial intelligence and its spread will undoubtedly present a problem. Already, social media portals contain a lot of misinformation, the spread of which is difficult to control and the source of which is often not identifiable. We believe that in this light, the credibility of local news portals will increase and, of course, this brings with it a greater responsibility to be even more accurate and correct in the dissemination of information.
In addition, tools based on artificial intelligence can help the media industry to combat fake news and misinformation by detecting and removing it. However, it is important to bear in mind that the use of artificial intelligence in the media sector can also raise ethical and legal issues, and privacy and copyright infringements are a major concern. It is therefore important that the media industry adheres to the principles of responsible technology in the use of artificial intelligence and ensures that it is used in an ethical and lawful manner.
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Development and safety of digital solutions
Ekspress Grupp is a growing and evolving media group that adapts to the changing needs of its readers, customers and cooperation partners, and creates trends in their media consumption habits. An important part of the Group's daily work is the development of new digital products and services, and the creation of relevant and interesting content. Equally important is ensuring the reliability and security of the service, which would allow access to all the digital services of the Group at any time and in a device suitable for the media consumer. The fastest user growth has occurred in mobile devices.
In 2023, Ekspress Grupp increasingly focused on cybersecurity, both internally and externally. For Ekspress Grupp cybersecurity has become increasingly important as companies and organisations have become increasingly dependent on digital systems and technology. At Ekspress Grupp, we take cybersecurity seriously and adopt measures to protect our services and the data used in them. Performing risk analysis, using strong authentication methods, implementing software security updates, training employees and considering purchasing cyber liability insurance are just some of the measures we use to improve cybersecurity and reduce technical and human risks.
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Until now, the companies operating in the media sector have been mainly divided into two camps when it comes to earning income - whether to earn income from advertising sales or digital subscriptions. Today, the trends make it clear that the winning solution is a combination of both, i.e. a user-friendly balance of advertising and digital subscriptions, which consumers also seem to prefer on the Baltic market.
– Karl Anton, CIO of Ekspress Grupp


The number of digital subscriptions of Ekspress Grupp reached 207 328 in the Baltic States, increasing by 41% in a year.
In Latvia, the number of digital subscriptions increased by 87% in a year and totalled 26 427 by the end of the year.
In Lithuania, the number of digital subscriptions of Delfi increased by 112% in a year and totalled 39 872 by the end of the year.
The number of paid digital subscriptions of AS Delfi Meedia increased by 20% in a year and totalled 102 793 by the end of December, the annual growth of Õhtuleht Kirjastus was 10% and there were 24 875 subscriptions by the end of the year, the annual growth of digital subscriptions of Geenius Meedia was 25% and there were 6998 subscriptions by the end of the year.
The Lithuanian media portal Lrytas started selling paid content in the 4th quarter of 2023 and reached 6,363 digital subscriptions by the end of the year.
The share of the Group’s digital revenue was 83% of total revenue (2022: 78%).
The year 2023 was characterised by the rapid development of artificial intelligence, led by LLMs, i.e. large language models. Artificial intelligence-based solutions are in a strategic focus of Ekspress Grupp and we use solutions in commentary, customer service and image, audio and text processing to be more efficient and reduce human resources in repetitive tasks.
– Karl Anton, CIO of Ekspress Grupp