Metro International

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Metro International
Public (Nasdaq StockholmMTROA, (Nasdaq StockholmMTROB)
Founded 1995
Headquarters Luxembourg

Metro International is a Swedish global media company based in Luxembourg that publishes the Metro newspapers. Metro International's advertising sales have grown at a compound annual growth rate of 41 percent since launch of the first newspaper edition in 1995.[1] It is a freesheet, meaning that distribution is free, with revenues thus generated entirely through advertising. This newspaper is primarily intended for commuters who move daily in and out of big cities' business areas, mainly during rush hours.

The company was founded by Per Andersson and started as a subsidiary of the Modern Times Group along with Viasat Broadcasting. It is now controlled through investment company Kinnevik. The first edition of the newspaper was published as Metro Stockholm and distributed in the Stockholm metro. As of 2012, all European editions (except for the Hungarian one) have been sold, reportedly so that Metro International can focus on Latin America, considered the last growth market for free newspapers.[2][3]

Metro newspapers[edit]

The Amsterdam version of Metro from 31 August 2007, showing a headline about vandalism on Wikipedia

As of October 2009, there were 56 daily editions in 15 languages and in 19 countries across Europe, North and South America, and Asia, for an audience of more than 17 million daily readers and 37 million weekly readers.[1]

Metro newspaper editions are distributed in high-traffic commuter zones or in public transport networks, via a combination of self-service racks and by hand distributors on weekdays. Saturday editions are published in Stockholm, Santiago, São Paulo, and Lima. The distribution points are located either in or around public transport networks (subways, trains, buses, trams), office buildings, retail outlets, at key distribution points on busy streets, or in other high-density population areas such as college campuses.

Metro International launched several editions in Canada during 2000, leading to the creation of several commuter newspaper competitors, such as Sun Media's 24 Hours.

The local name of the Metro newspaper editions may vary due to trademark issues. Peruvian, Chilean, and Mexican editions are called Publimetro, and the Spanish edition is named Metro Directo.

Not all newspapers named Metro are part of the Metro International group. Associated Newspapers publishes another freesheet called Metro in twelve areas around Britain. This UK Metro is not related to Metro International, which used the name Morning News for its (now defunct) freesheet distributed there. However, Metro International and Associated Metro do collaborate on the Dublin Metro Herald newspaper (launched 10 October 2005), which they both own a third of, along with The Irish Times. The Dublin Metro newspaper uses the Associated Metro logo and format, however.[4] It is reported that Metro International has plans to launch a rival free evening newspaper in London.[citation needed]

There are also other examples of newspapers named Metro that are not part of the Metro International Group. In Belgium, Mass Transit Media, a joint venture of Concentra and Rossel, publishes the free daily newspaper Metro. In California, Metro Silicon Valley is a free weekly newspaper which was founded in 1985. Neither of these newspapers have links to Metro International.

In Hong Kong, Metro International sold Metro Daily in 2013 to a local businessman.[5]

Timeline of Metro editions[edit]

  • Metro was first launched in Stockholm on 13 February 1995.
  • The first international edition lunched in Budapest, Hungary in Hungarian (1998) and became the most popular daily with 400.000 daily edition. The newspaper had two editions, in the countryside and in Budapest. The popular Metro - later renamed as Metropol - was sold to a Hungarian private editor in 2011 and became target of the political fights. The newspaper was closed in 2015.
  • A German-language edition is published in Switzerland by Metro Publication (Schweiz) AG under the name Metropol on 31 January 2000 as a direct competitor to 20 Minuten. The newspaper ceased publication without announcement on 13 February 2002.
  • In 2000, a Spanish edition named Publimetro is published in Buenos Aires, Argentina, with a circulation of 390,000.[6] Facing competition from the free daily La Razón published by Grupo Clarín, Publimetro is suspended indefinitely a year later.[7]
  • A weekly magazine named Metropop starts publication in Hong Kong on 27 April 2006 (published on Thursdays).
  • At the end of 2006, Metro started a dedicated technology paper, Metro Teknik (English section)[8] which is distributed weekly to companies, science parks, and technical universities around Sweden.
  • Due to financial difficulties in the press sector in general, and the free press in particular, Metro International closed down its Polish edition on 5 January 2007. Earlier, the Danish afternoon version of the newspaper was closed down, and the business in Finland was sold.
  • As of October 2008, the Croatian Metro edition was also cancelled, due to disappointing advertorial income.
  • As of 29 January 2009, Metro International closed down its Spanish operations.
  • In 2009, Metro sold its US papers.[9]
  • As of 31 May 2012, Metro International was delisted from the NASDAQ OMX Stockholm stock exchange.[10]
  • In August 2016, the French version of the newspaper, published since 2002 and property of TF1 since 2011, is discontinued.[11][better source needed]
  • In September 2016, the Portuguese version of the newspaper, published since 2004 and property of Cofina since 2009, is discontinued.[12]

Metro editions by region[edit]



There are national editions in the Czech Republic, Denmark, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Finland, the Netherlands, Russia, and Sweden (Metro). City editions of Metro are published in many major cities.

Belgium has a bilingual free newspaper with the same name, but it is not owned by Metro International. Likewise, Metro in the United Kingdom is not part of the network.

North America[edit]

Metro newspaper vending boxes in Toronto
  • Canada: Metro's Canadian newspapers were launched in 2000 and were originally published by joint ventures with Canadian companies to comply with Canadian media laws. The 2000 launch of Metro in Toronto sparked a newspaper war as the daily Toronto Star and Toronto Sun both scrambled to put out their own free giveaway versions aimed at commuters. The Toronto edition of Metro merged with its Torstar rival GTA Today in 2001.[13] Metro International sold 40 percent of its 50 percent share in most of the English-Canadian papers to Torstar Corporation[14] though they retain the Metro masthead and layout. Metro closed its newspaper in Regina and Saskatoon in 2014. In November 2017 it closed its operations in Ottawa and Winnipeg, as part of an asset swap with rival Postmedia.
  • Guatemala: Metro is published in Guatemala City
  • Mexico: Metro is published in Guadalajara, Mexico City, and Monterrey
  • Nicaragua: Metro is published in Managua
  • Puerto Rico: Metro is published in Puerto Rico
  • United States: Metro is published in Boston, New York City (Metro New York), Philadelphia (Philadelphia Metro)

South America[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b
  2. ^ Sabel, Pieter (29 August 2012). "Wat moet TMG met gratis dagblad Metro?". de Volkskrant. Retrieved 29 August 2012. 
  3. ^ "Telegraaf koopt gratis dagblad Metro". de Volkskrant. 29 August 2012. Retrieved 29 August 2012. 
  4. ^ Byrne, Ciar (3 April 2003). "Desmond in Swedish talks over London freesheet". The Guardian. 
  5. ^
  6. ^ "". 
  7. ^ Archived 16 April 2007 at the Wayback Machine.
  8. ^ Archived 2 September 2008 at the Wayback Machine.
  9. ^ "404. Page Not Found - Bloomberg" Check |url= value (help). [permanent dead link]
  10. ^ "Metro delisted 31 May 2012". Metro International. 3 May 2012. Archived from the original on 24 October 2012. 
  11. ^ "Metronews". 
  12. ^ "Jornal gratuito "Metro" vai acabar". Diário de Notícias. 1 September 2016. 
  13. ^ "GTA Today, Metro will merge next week". 
  14. ^ Metro International Annual Report 2011, p. 6, 35 "Archived copy" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 22 May 2012. Retrieved 12 June 2012. 

External links[edit]

Media related to Metro (newspaper) at Wikimedia Commons