Media Ownership

Media in Serbia are primarily in the hands of private owners and companies. The main characteristic of media ownership in Serbia is that on paper everything often looks rather simple and clear, but in practice this is often not the case.

Ownership data can be seen in Media Register, an online data base run by Serbian Business Registry (APR) while Regulatory Body for Electronic Media (REM) runs its own registry for electronic media segment. This, however, didn’t stop proxy ownership or hidden ties of media owners with political parties in power.

In the recent years, telecom operators (state owned Telekom Srbija and privately owned SBB) have entered the media field, founding or buying cable TV stations or financing the production of media content, especially in the field of sports and entertainment. The race between them cannot merely be viewed through the prism of market competition, but as an attempt to use the state owned company to reduce the influence of the few private television stations which have a critical attitude towards the current government.   

In the printed media market companies that dominate usually run tabloid media. Two biggest groups are Ringier, whose portfolio includes the daily Blic, and various other lifestyle publications, and Mondo, successor of Adria Media Group which, among other things, publishes the daily Kurir. These two media houses also own some of the most visited websites such as, and Daily Danas became part of United Media group, owner of the Nova S paper and cable TV channels N1 and Nova S.

In the electronic media sphere, the concentration of ownership is higher than in other segments of the media scene. In this part of the media, the presence of telecommunication operators is visible – state founded Telekom Srbija is cooperating with Kopernikus Company (owner of two national broadcasters, B92 and Prva TV), the most influential private TV station Pink and public broadcaster RTS through joint co-production of programs. SBB is owner of United Media Group, which is running cable TVs, N1 and Nova S. Division between the two is also visible in editorial directions – while media supported by Telekom follow pro-government line in reporting, media under SBB umbrella are critical towards Government moves.  

Three companies – S Media Team, Maxim Media and the public broadcaster account for around 40% of radio listenership. When it comes to online media, most influential websites are owned by companies which already possess other types of media.

Although most media are privately owned, the ruling party has enormous influence over the media – via control of advertising, directing state funds, or direct influence over owners. The ultimate effect of this is that, although private ownership is diverse, editorial policies often have the same direction, news programs frequently resemble each other, while there is a noticeable lack of criticism of those in power.

  • Project by
    Global Media Registry
    Funded by European Union