Indonesia’s biggest news portal, Detik.com, was acquired by Para Group from Agranet Multicitra Siberkom on July 1. The acquisition was initiated two years ago after two of Detik’s minority shareholders — Tiger Investment, which owns a 39% share and Mitsui & Co, which has a 2% share — reportedly wanted to sell their share in the news portal to fund their individual expansions. Negotiations, however, stalled after interested parties failed to reach a compromise.

According to Alexa, Detik.com is the ninth most popular website in Indonesia. It was founded in 1998 by its CEO Abdul Rahman and the Managing Editor, Budiono Darsono with an initial investment of Rp100 million (US$11,700).

The Para Group, also known as CT Corporation, was formed 24 years ago and is owned by Chairul Tanjung. It now maintains three core aspects to its business: financial services, which is run by Mega Corpora; natural resources under CT Global Resources; and finally the media, lifestyle and entertainment which is run by Trans Corpora, under which Detik would fall under.

The Para Group started their expansion into the Asia Pacific region by establishing retail businesses in Singapore and property businesses in Hong Kong.

Ishadi SK, TransTV Commissioner and Para Group spokesperson, stated that the acquisition was still in the due-diligence phase and the price is still being negotiated, although the Jakarta Globe pegs the price to be “no less than $40 million”. Another news site, Bisnis.com, reckons the value to be closer to US$60 million, quoting an anonymous source.

“The negotiation process continued until three weeks ago, until an agreement was reached with a price of  US$ 60 million,” Bisnis’s source was quoted as saying.

“Clear terms and conditions have already been agreed upon, and is within a month the legal process is expected to be completed. The amount acquired is 100%, which includes the shares owned by Budiono Darsono and others, as well as those owned by Tiger Investment, a company based in New York,” Budiono Darsono said yesterday to Bisnis.

Budiono added that post-acquisition, there would be no change in the organisational structure of detik.com, although its new owners is expected to place some of their own personnel into Agranet in the near future.