Our publishing tradition crafted unique creative content creation capabilities. Our foundational roots allowed us to be progressive, constantly creating or breaking into new territories. Inspired by this tradition, we create trusted and engaging communities; we reinvent how these communities are connected to each segment of the economy; we build value through trust, new business ecosystems, and attractive economics. We are Marquard Media Group, a leading European media company, driven by passion, innovating for more than five decades.
“Pop culture is not a fleeting fad, but an enormous movement of a new generation with revolutionary potential.”
– Founder Jürg Marquard, here with Jimi Hendrix 1968 in Zurich
About the Founder
Jürg Marquard was born on July 13 1945 in Zurich as the son of a dentist and worked as a journalist for various daily newspapers and women’s magazines already during his school days. After graduating from the business high school, he started the youth magazine POP in 1965 with CHF 2000 capital, which he had borrowed from school friends, and thus laid the foundation for his career as a journalist and entrepreneur.
At that time, Jürg Marquard already sensed that the flourishing pop and rock culture was not just a temporary phenomenon, but a strong youth movement with revolutionary potential – a movement that would affect many aspects of life, from the music and entertainment industry to fashion, lifestyle and culture, and even politics. At the same time as he put his magazine POP on the map, Jürg Marquard was also working as a radio and TV presenter, specializing in pop music. He was the first presenter of the radio chart show to gain great popularity in Switzerland.
Successful entry into the market for German-speaking magazines
After the eventful early days in which Jürg Marquard himself edited POP magazine with a lot of passion, the magazine became a commercial success. After various mergers with other German youth magazines, POP became POP/ROCKY and the second largest German youth magazine, holding this position for many years. Marquard founded, acquired and merged further youth and music magazines and soon had the largest portfolio in this area.
Jürg Marquard achieved his big breakthrough in the German-speaking magazine market with the takeover of COSMOPOLITAN in 1981 one year after its foundation. After a weak start, the German edition of COSMOPOLITAN was dragging its feet without any noticeable success until Jürg Marquard took over. With radical editorial changes, he turned COSMOPOLITAN into a huge success in less than a year, and the magazine led the way for a new type of women’s magazines. When taking over COSMOPOLITAN on October 14, 1981, Jürg Marquard explained his vision: “I believe in the future of COSMOPOLITAN. Recent years have brought about deep changes with regard to the self-image and role behavior of women. COSMOPOLITAN is the journalistic answer to these changes: The success is therefore pre-determined.” COSMOPOLITAN subsequently became a very successful premium women’s magazine in the German-speaking market and thus laid the foundation for the expansion of the premium magazine segment of Marquard Media Group.
The internationalization of Marquard Media
In 1988, Jürg Marquard launched the Hungarian versions of POPCORN and MÄDCHEN (Eng. Girl), which made him the first western publisher of periodical magazines behind the then still existing “Iron Curtain”. The great success as well as the positive perspectives following the political change made Jürg Marquard invest dynamically in the Central European markets and expand his activities – including the acquisition of several leading daily newspapers in Hungary and Poland, the purchase of two printing plants in Hungary and Poland as well the launch of new magazines.
Then in 1999, during a strategic reorientation process, Jürg Marquard focused the activities of his publishing group on the premium magazine segment, which included streamlining his portfolio: The youth and music magazines were sold to Axel Springer publishing, the Hungarian newspapers and the printing plant to Ringier publishing, and the Polish web offset printing house to Baring Private Equity Partners.
Following this phase of consolidation, Marquard Media expanded once again in Hungary and Poland by launching a number of new magazines and also with acquisitions such as VIPress (PLAYBOY and VOYAGE) in Poland.
With a successful public offer in the summer of 2005, Marquard Media secured a 95.1% stake in Computec Media AG, a listed publisher of more than 15 consumer magazines and successful portals in the area of electronic entertainment and multimedia.
Besides that, in 2005 Jürg Marquard was the co-producer and protagonist of the reality TV series “Traumjob” (Eng. Dream Job), a licensed version of Donald Trump’s “The Apprentice”. The show had top ratings on Kanal 1 on Swiss television.
In 1995, the Hungarian government appointed Jürg Marquard Honorary General Consul to the Republic of Hungary in Switzerland. On December 12, 2005, he was given the memorial medal “PRO AUXILIO CIVIUM HUNGARORUM” by the Hungarian government in recognition of his successful 10-year function as Honorary General Consul, and on December 6, 2006, he was also awarded the honorary medal “Held der Freiheit” (Hero of Liberty).
In 1999, he was awarded the Euro Crystal Globe by the European Institution of Economics.
Jürg Marquard is married, father of five children and lives in Switzerland. But his diverse interests take him all over the world, and he likes racing tracks around the world. As an active racing driver, he competed in many international racing series and one-make cups until a few years ago.