News International has bolstered its online operations, beating its two fiercest rivals to the acquisition of UK online graduate recruitment company Milkround.
The media owner paid 20m to secure the site following an auction in which it came up against Trinity Mirror and Daily Mail and General Trust (DMGT).
The new venture will be headed up by Milkround founder and managing director Tom Hughes.
The site was launched in 1996 linking graduates from the top 50 universities across the UK with recruiters across a range of sectors.
News International says the move will both strengthen its presence in the student marketplace and provide it with an online platform to support print supplements which appear in its flagship national newspaper The Times, including Career and First Executive.
It is the latest in a string of online purchases for the company which has spent heavily on gaming, entertainment and lifestyle sites such as Myspace.com as part of a $580m (330m) shopping spree.