Axel Springer Verlag is one of the largest media companies in Europe. It was founded in 1946 by Axel Springer and his father Hinrich Springer and began with the launch of the Nordwestdeutsche Hefte and Horzu publications. These were soon followed by the Hamburger Abendblatt, the Bild and the Sonntag. In 1953 Axel Springer expanded with the acquisition of Die Welt, Welt am and Das Neue Blatt. Axel Springer became known for promoting German reunification through his newspapers and publications and by the 1960′s and 1970′s the company came under attack from left wing groups. In 1972 The Red Army Faction claimed responsibility for six bombs being placed the company’s Hamburg headquarters. In contemporary times, the company has gone on to become the largest publishing house in Europe, as it accounts for a 23.6% share of the German daily newspaper market. One of the original newspapers acquired by Axel Springer continues to be the highest circulating newspaper in Europe with a daily readership of 12 million people. Today, its 230 publications are varied and include news, automobiles, sports, computers, electronics, women and lifestyle newspapers and magazines. Its expansion is also present internationally as it currently operates out of 36 countries and has 11,500 employees.