Google has offered European news organisations €150m (£107m, $163m) over the next three years.

The funds will be used to help companies make money from their work and is available to start-ups as well as more established news publishers.

Google's Digital News Initiative aims to "help develop more sustainable models for news".

Google's European head of strategic relations said: "This is just the beginning and we invite others to join us."

The partners already involved in the plan include the Financial Times, the Guardian, El Pais but titles from Rupert Murdoch's News Corp are notably absent, the BBC reported.

The California-based company is facing investigation by the European Union over allegations that it has abused its monopoly positions in online search and that is has unfairly bundled its Android apps.

The Guardian welcomed the move but said success should not just be measured in the amount of money the company invested in the scheme.

"We welcome the Digital News Initiative, and see its real potential. But that potential depends on whether, having been conceived by Google in Europe, it is now adopted by Google [bosses at its US headquarters] in Mountain View," said the Guardian's international director Tony Danker.

"The test of success is whether it leads to meaningful change to ensure journalism flourishes in the digital age."