Hubert Burda

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Hubert Burda (2011)

Hubert Burda (born February 9, 1940 in Heidelberg ) is a German publisher .

Hubert Burda is the owner of Hubert Burda Media , which publishes Bunte , Focus and Superillu , among others . Hubert Burda unites one of the leading European internet companies with a media house connection. Digital companies such as Cyberport , XING , Focus Online , Holidaycheck and jameda contribute to Hubert Burda Media generating more than half of its sales in the digital sector.

Hubert Burda is chairman of the Digital Life Design (DLD) conference , which takes place every January in Munich. With an estimated fortune of 3.8 billion dollars, he is one of the richest Germans according to Forbes and the third richest publisher in Germany after Friede Springer and Elisabeth Mohn .

Live and act

Youth and the time before New York

Hubert was born after Franz and Frieder as the youngest of three sons of the publisher couple Franz and Aenne Burda . As a primary school graduate, he took painting lessons every afternoon until he graduated from high school - almost two years - and developed the desire to become a painter. The father wished for a different career for the son, as a compromise he was allowed to study art history instead, but only on the condition that he had completed his studies and doctorate at the age of 25 . Burda studied art history with Hans Sedlmayr as well as archeology and sociology at the Ludwig Maximilians University in Munich. He did his doctorate in art history before the age of 26. The subject of his dissertation was The Ruin in the Pictures Hubert Roberts .

After several traineeships in US advertising agencies and publishing houses, Burda worked until 1974 as the publishing director of Burda's own magazine Bild und Funk . In 1969 he dared to launch an independent magazine project with m - Die Zeitschrift für den Mann . In the style of the time and based on twen , half-naked women were also depicted, which the Catholic father, who however had a child at the time of Hubert's birth with his secretary Elfriede Breuer, who was ten years his junior, put it down after a year.

Takeover of the company and first years there

At the end of 1986 / beginning of 1987, Burda took over Burda Holding as sole shareholder and chairman of the board after his father had died and his sons had only recently made his deputies. Franz jun. and Frieder made a real division. A serious family crisis occurred when the brothers, contrary to an agreement, sold their shares in Axel Springer Verlag to his heirs in April 1988 . They distrusted Burda's business abilities and put their personal interests first. Burda litigated, won in the first instance and lost in the third instance.

In 1988 Burda was able to poach the editorial director of the Bild newspaper , Günter Prinz , from Springer-Verlag . After the fall of the Wall , he challenged the Bild newspaper in May 1991 in cooperation with the media investor Rupert Murdoch through the tabloid Super! out. Prinz was responsible for the conception. A first setback was the new enticement of Prinz by Springer-Verlag in spring 1991. Murdoch withdrew from the contract in July 1992 due to financial difficulties, and Burda had to give up the project with a loss of 30 million DM. In addition to the program guide Super TV , he was able to establish SUPERillu, the magazine with the largest circulation in East Germany, from 1990 onwards .

Establishment of the Focus and Burdas company strategy

By founding the news magazine Focus in 1993, in collaboration with Helmut Markwort , he succeeded in building up and maintaining competition from rival Der Spiegel , which still exists today . In 1999, Burda renamed the holding company into Hubert Burda Media , which he chaired until January 2010 and is now the publisher. In addition to the success with Focus , he achieved greater business plus through the consistent expansion of the range of titles. While in the era of Burda sen. Publishing and printing sales were still roughly equal, the Burda-Holding now generates several times as much with its publishing products and especially in the digital sector. Burda also expanded its commitment to international cooperation ( Hachette , Rizzoli ), international expansion (Singapore, Thailand, India, Russia) and especially the Internet. Among other things, he entered into a collaboration with Microsoft as a content supplier and built up numerous other online services .

The company Hubert Burda Media in 2017 achieved in the four business areas Digital Brand National , media brands National , media brands International and pressure consolidated external sales amounted to 2.672 billion euros with a total of 11,918 employees. The group sold around 255 million magazines in Germany and, with 147 titles in Germany, reached 73.9 percent of the German population aged 14 and over. Together with its partner publishers, Hubert Burda Media published 358 titles abroad in 2017. In 2017, the National Digital Brands division generated more than 52 percent of sales.


Christa Maar and Hubert Burda at the opening of the “Faszination Gut” gut model by the Felix Burda Foundation

Burda founded the Petrarca Prize in 1975 and the Nicolas Born Prize for poetry in 1988 , which was awarded until 1995. He founded the Academy for the third millennium in 1994 and initiated the Corporate Art Prize in 1997 for the cultural commitment of companies and initiatives. In 1999 he founded the Hermann Lenz Prize for German-language literature and the Hubert Burda Prize for young poetry from Eastern Europe. In 1999 he founded the Hubert Burda Foundation , which is dedicated to literature, international understanding, art, culture and science. In 2001 the Felix Burda Foundation followed , which is committed to promoting colon cancer prevention. Together with the City of Offenburg, Hubert Burda founded the European Translator Award Offenburg in 2005 .

Burda is committed to German-Jewish reconciliation and, among other things, financially participated in the production of an English-language CD-ROM for the Shoah Foundation (Survivors of the Shoah Visual History Foundation) by Steven Spielberg , so that it is available to schools as teaching material .

Burda donated one million euros for the Munich Jewish Center , which opened in November 2006 and in which a hall is named after him.

As part of the DLD Conference ( Digital, Life, Design ) that has been held since 2005, Burda has been presenting an Aenne Burda Award since 2006 . The award is intended to encourage the work of young women in the media, to remain true to the path they have chosen, to believe in their ideas and to implement them.

Private life

Burda married the art historian Christa Maar in 1967 . The marriage ended in divorce in 1972. The son Felix Burda, who was born on November 25, 1967 and also received his doctorate in art history, died at the end of January 2001 of colon cancer (see Felix Burda Foundation ).

Since November 8, 1991, Burda has been married to the doctor and actress Maria Furtwängler -Burda for the second time and has two children with her, Jacob and Elisabeth.

Burda is Roman Catholic.


Hubert Burda has assets of around 3.8 billion US dollars (according to Forbes list 2018). This puts him in 588th place on Forbes' list of the richest people in the world.


Member of the Federal Assembly

Hubert Burda was a member of the 14th Federal Assembly on the proposal of the CDU and took part in the election of the German Federal President on June 30, 2010 .


According to the specialist magazine c't , Hubert Burda has been campaigning for the controversial ancillary copyright law for press publishers on a European level for many years . One such was adopted in the first reading by the EU Parliament on September 12, 2018, although numerous academics, Internet pioneers, civil rights organizations, business associations, Internet experts from all parties and almost 5 million citizens petitioned against such a right.





  • Hubert Burda. Between rebellion and duty. Documentation, Germany, 2006, 45 min., Script and direction: Kathrin Pitterling, production: Norddeutscher Rundfunk , series: Die Erben, part 3, first broadcast: January 22, 2007.
  • Gero von Boehm meets… Hubert Burda. Conversation. Germany, 2002, 45 min., Director: Gero von Boehm, production: Interscience, first broadcast: April 24, 2002 in 3sat .

Web links

Commons : Hubert Burda  - collection of images, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

  1. ^ The World's Billionaires . In: Forbes . ( [accessed February 17, 2018]).
  2. Michael Ebert and Sven Michaelsen: Interview with the publisher Hubert Burda. I fell on my face a lot. In: Süddeutsche Zeitung Magazin . Süddeutsche Zeitung , February 6, 2015, accessed on February 11, 2015 .
  3. ^ Dissertation by Hubert Burda in the catalog of the German National Library
  4. A conversation with Hubert Burda about his quick-tempered mother, loneliness and the balancing act between Heino and Handke . ( [accessed on February 17, 2018]).
  5. “These likes were a laughing stock for me” - Hubert Burda's brilliant birthday interview in the SZ magazine ›Meedia. Retrieved February 17, 2018 .
  6. Figures based on Hubert Burda Media Holding Kommanditgesellschaft: Consolidated Financial Statements 2017 , p. 4, p. 18, p. 24 f.
  7. Burda Media Holding Kommanditgesellschaft: Consolidated Financial Statements 2017 , p. 4.
  8. ^ Burda: Donation of millions for the Jewish Center ., January 28, 2005
  9. Quoted from: Daniela Terbu: Digital Lifestyle Day 2006 , PRVAnews, February 1, 2006 ( Memento from January 18, 2007 in the Internet Archive )
  10. ^ Funeral of Aenne Burda. In: Retrieved November 10, 2005 .
  11. Hubert Burda on Forbes Lists
  14. Open letter: Broad alliance against European upload filter regulation. In: Zeit Online. Archived from the original on July 4, 2018 ; accessed on July 4, 2018 .
  20. heise online: Copyright filter: EU reporter Voss accuses opponents of "fake news". Retrieved July 3, 2018 .
  21. ^ Leo Baeck Prize - Central Council of Jews honors Hubert Burda ,, November 2, 2006
  22. New Honorary Senator of the University for Jewish Studies Heidelberg: Dr. Hubert Burda. In: Lectures and Dates , website of the University of Jewish Studies, accessed on June 1, 2011.
  23. Honor: France appoints Hubert Burda as an officer of the Legion of Honor . , November 22, 2012
  24. Award of the tolerance rings 2014. European Academy of Sciences and Arts, September 22, 2014, accessed on July 6, 2018 .
  25. These are the new Munich honorary citizens. Retrieved January 26, 2019 .
  26. Hubert Burda: The Bunte Story. A people magazine in times of upheaval. Pantheon, Munich 2012, excerpt (PDF; 156 kB) ( Memento from January 3, 2014 in the Internet Archive ); Hans-Jürgen Jakobs: That's new, Pussycat . In: Süddeutsche Zeitung , November 8, 2012 (review)
  27. Burda's notes on the digital revolution ,, message from December 9, 2014.
  28. Peter Heinlein: Freed from the shadow . In: Hamburger Abendblatt , January 22, 2007 (review)
  29. Gero von Boehm meets ... Hubert Burda , 3sat , April 24, 2002