The British occupiers granted newspaper licenses for newspapers favoring the political orientation of the SPD (Westfälische Rundschau, Dortmund, and Neue Ruhr Zeitung / Neue Rhein Zeitung, Essen) and a newspaper favoring the political orientation of the CDU (Westfalenpost, Soest).
The journalist Erich Brost, born 1903 and a native of Elbing, Western Prussia, receives the license 192 from the British military government and establishes the Westdeutsche Allgemeine Zeitung (WAZ), with the first issue being published in Bochum on 3 April 1948. Brost remains editor in chief until 1970 and WAZ publisher until the time of his death in 1995.
Cofounder and co-publisher Jacob Funke, born 1901, worked as a freelance journalist from 1945 to 1948. Born in Essen, he was put in charge of the business area at the newly founded WAZ since he was very familiar with the Ruhr Basin and had excellent business connections. Funke remains partner, publisher, and head of the publishing house until the time of his death in 1975.
3. April 1948 The first issue of the Westdeutsche Allgemeine Zeitung (WAZ) is published with a print run of 312,000 copies. Readers are delighted with the design and layout based on the English model of "popular papers." Bochum is headquarters of the publishing house and the editorial staff because this is the location of the only still intact rotary printing machine able to handle the high print run.
The first WAZ branch office is opened in the town of Herne.
The new publishing offices of the Westdeutsche Allgemeine Zeitung (WAZ) on Friedrichstrasse in Essen are officially opened after years of improvising.
The new print house of the Westdeutsche Allgemeine Zeitung (WAZ) on Schederhofstrasse in Essen is completed. Editorial office and print shop are connected with a subterranean pneumatic dispatch system.
The Westdeutsche Allgemeine Zeitung (WAZ) acquires the publishing house Welt am Sonnabend established in 1932, publishing the weekly magazine with the same name.
In 1973, the Westdeutsche Allgemeine Zeitung (WAZ) takes over the Westfalenpost (WP) with headquarters in Hagen, acquires a majority share of the Westfälische Rundschau (WR) headquartered in Dortmund in 1975 and of the Neue Ruhr Zeitung / Neue Rhein Zeitung (NRZ) headquartered in Essen in 1976.
On 1 January 1976, the publishing houses form the newspaper group WA. They collaborate in the business areas (ads, distribution, administration) and in the technical area (printing) but remain independent in the editorial area. The "WAZ Model" – later copied by many other publishers – is created. The resulting synergy strengthens the economic basis of the editorial offices.
Jacob Funke, WAZ cofounder, dies at the age of 73.
Günther Grotkamp, born 1927, is appointed manager of the newspaper group WAZ.
In 1960, Grotkamp joins the WAZ publishing house as in-house counselor and head of the personnel department; he becomes authorized signatory for the Funke family company. Günther Grotkamp, a lawyer, is the "architect of the "WAZ Model."
Founding of the advertising paper company Westdeutsche Verlags- und Werbegesellschaft (WVW) headquartered in Essen.
The newspaper group WAZ develops the TV magazine BWZ (Bunte Wochen Zeitung), which is included on Fridays as an insert to the four titles of the Group.
Erich Schumann joins the Group and, together with Günther Grotkamp, becomes equal manager of the WAZ.
Schumann, a lawyer by trade, was previously senior head of a joint law and tax consulting firm in Bonn as well as member of the supervisory board in companies active in the finance and media industry
The newspaper group WAZ obtains a 10 percent share in the private TV station RTL plus and thus becomes a partner of the CLT / Ufa.
The newspaper group WAZ acquires a 50% share in the publishing house Neue Kronen Zeitung headquartered in Vienna.
The newspaper group WAZ acquires a 49.4% share in the Kurier publishing house headquartered in Vienna.
On 1 April, Radio Duisburg is the first local radio station broadcasting in North Rhine-Westphalia. The newspaper group WAZ holds a majority share in the operating company – as it does later in nine additional local broadcasting stations along the Rhine and Ruhr. The service company Westfunk centrally handles the business and technical issues of the broadcasting stations associated with the WAZ Group.
The newspaper group WAZ is the first publishing house to invest in the new federal states establishing the newspaper group Thüringen (ZGT). The ZGT is organized according to the "WAZ Model" and as such is the central service provider for the daily newspapers Thüringer Allgemeine (TA), Ostthüringer Zeitung (OTZ), and Thüringische Landeszeitung (TLZ).
The WAZ acquires a majority share in the Hungarian publishing company Pannon Lapok Társasága. This publishing company publishes a total of five regional newspapers.
Erich Brost, license holder, founder, and publisher of the Westdeutsche Allgemeine Zeitung (WAZ) dies on 8 October 1995 at the age of almost 92.
The newspaper group WAZ acquires a majority share in the Bulgarian publishing house 168 Stunden, the first private press group in Bulgaria.
The newspaper group WAZ renames itself to better reflect its range of activity and is now known as the WAZ Media Group.
The WAZ Media Group expands its involvement in Bulgaria by acquiring a share in the Media Holding AG, publisher of the largest daily newspaper in Bulgaria, among others.
The WAZ Media Group obtains shares in the Europa Press Holding (EPH), the largest newspaper and magazine publisher in Croatia.
Expansion of the newspaper division continues with a majority holding in the Munich publishing company Gong that publishes a title with the same name. In 2001, the WAZ Media Groups owns the publishing company 100%.
The publisher now competes with the postal service and establishes the private courier service Westdeutscher Post Service (WPS) and the Thüringer Post Service (THPS).
In Rumania, the WAZ Media Group holds a share in the daily newspaper Romania Libera.
In Serbia, the WAZ Group cooperates with the publisher Politika AD, a company that publishes the second oldest daily in the Balkans, among others.
The WAZ Media Group becomes active in Montenegro and obtains a 50% share in the Daily Press d.o.o., publishing a daily newspaper called Vijesti.
In the Macedonian market, the publishing house holds the majority in the daily newspapers Dnevnik, Utrinski Vesnik, and Vest.
The WAZ Media Group assumes from the publisher Bastei-Lübbe the weekly yellow press title Das Goldene Blatt.
In Hungary, the WAZ expands its portfolio with a share in the political and business magazine HVG.
The WAZ Media Group sells its share in the RTL Group.
In Croatia, the publishing house acquires a share in the regional daily Slobodna Dalmacija.
Founding of the private courier service Pin Group, a joint venture of the publishers Holtzbrinck, Springer, the WAZ Media Group, as well as the Rosalia AG, Luxemburg.
The Westfalenpost, Westfälische Rundschau and Neue Ruhr Zeitung / Neue Rhein Zeitung newspapers celebrate, one after the other at short intervals, their 60th anniversary and their continuance as modern and future-oriented regional newspapers.
The WAZ Media Group in co-operation with the Westdeutscher Rundfunk (WDR) broadcasting station launches the media library “We in North Rhine Westphalia – Our Collected Works”.
Dr. h.c. Erich Schumann died at the age of 76 on 21 January 2007 after a short serious illness. The managing partner of the WAZ Media Group was regarded as an excellent publisher personality with strong honorary commitment.
The WAZ Media Group acquires a 100 percent holding in the traditional Braunschweiger Zeitung newspaper from the Voigt publishing house family and the North German State Bank (Norddeutsche Landesbank).
The WAZ Media Group and the Berlin-based ReLine Intermedien Verlags-GmbH launch Rheinskaja Gazeta, Germany’s first Russian-language daily newspaper.