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The Daily News, a storied New York tabloid, is sold to Tronc

The Daily News, a storied New York tabloid, is sold to Tronc

Postby smix » Tue Sep 05, 2017 5:48 pm

The Daily News, a storied New York tabloid, is sold to Tronc
AP

URL: https://www.apnews.com/13e4e77be32842a9 ... d-to-Tronc
Category: Business
Published: September 5, 2017

Description: NEW YORK (AP) — The owner of two of the country’s largest newspapers has purchased the Daily News, a New York tabloid that is famous for generations of hard-punching reporting and irreverent headlines but that has struggled recently to find its place in the digital age. Chicago-based Tronc Inc., the publisher of the Los Angeles Times and the Chicago Tribune, announced the deal Monday night. The purchase gives Tronc and its chairman, Michael Ferro, who spent most of his childhood on Long Island, another big brand name in old-school journalism. The big question will be whether the company can find a way to make the newspaper lucrative again. The Daily News won a Pulitzer Prize this year but has suffered through rounds of layoffs and declining circulation. Tronc CEO Justin Dearborn said acquiring the paper and its popular website would “provide us with another strategic platform for growing our digital business, expanding our reach and broadening our services for advertisers and marketers,” and both Tronc and Daily News executives said the company would maintain the quality of the paper’s journalism. “Over the past near-century, the New York Daily News has served New York City and its surrounding areas with its award-winning journalism and helped shape the dynamics of the city,” the outgoing News owner, Mort Zuckerman, said in a release. A New York real estate magnate, he had owned the paper since 1993. The deal puts the Daily News under the umbrella of one of the nation’s major newspaper chains, with properties spanning from the Hartford Courant in Connecticut to the Sun-Sentinel in South Florida. Tronc - which evolved from Daily News founder the Tribune Co. — gets a presence in the New York media market, a news site with about 25 million unique monthly visitors and other assets. Under the terms of the deal, Tronc said it assumed the Daily News’ operational and pension liabilities and got 100 percent ownership of its Jersey City, New Jersey, printing plant and a 49.9 percent interest in the plant’s 25-acre (10-hectare) property, which overlooks the Manhattan skyline. With the deal, News Editor-in-Chief Arthur Browne was also named publisher, though he plans to retire at the end of the year. Founded in 1919, the Daily News considers itself “New York’s Hometown Newspaper,” informing everyday New Yorkers about their city and more. It has been known over the years for zesty headlines — perhaps most notably “Ford to City: Drop Dead” during the New York’s financial woes in 1975 — gossip, city coverage and star columnists who included Jimmy Breslin, Pete Hamill and Liz Smith. Lately, the tabloid has also attracted attention with its unsparing criticism of President Donald Trump. (Trump, in return, branded the paper “worthless” and Zuckerman “dopey” in tweets last year.) The Daily News and ProPublica together won this year’s Pulitzer Prize in public service journalism for uncovering how authorities used an obscure law to evict hundreds of people, mostly poor minorities, from their homes. It was the Daily News’ 11th Pulitzer Prize, and the fifth during Zuckerman’s tenure. But the paper has also contended with the troubles that have affected newspapers in general as readership and ad dollars have shifted online, without making up for the decline in print revenue. Total newspaper revenue fell 11 percent from 2012 to 2016 as average daily print circulation slipped 13 percent, according to a June report by the consulting and audit firm PwC. It added that while newspapers’ online advertising revenue has been increasing, other entities have captured much of the growth in digital ad dollars. The Daily News also grappled with a muscular hometown tabloid rival, the News Corp.-owned New York Post. Zuckerman eyed selling the Daily News in 2015 but ultimately took it off the market.
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Publisher Tronc To Purchase New York's 'Daily News'

Postby smix » Tue Sep 05, 2017 6:18 pm

Publisher Tronc To Purchase New York's 'Daily News'
NPR

URL: http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/ ... daily-news
Category: Business
Published: September 5, 2017

Description: Chicago-based Tronc, the newspaper chain that owns The Chicago Tribune, has struck a deal to buy The New York Daily News. The venerable tabloid, long a staple of New York's working class and subway patrons, will reportedly be purchased for $1 and the assumption of operational and pension liabilities, according to The Chicago Tribune. Although the details have not been made public, Reuters reports that Tronc, formerly known as Tribune Publishing Company, will assume roughly $30 million in liabilities. As NPR's David Folkenflik reports: "The Daily News, much like Tronc itself, is much diminished and has struggled to secure a firm financial footing." Justin Dearborn, Tronc's chief executive officer, was quoted by the Tribune as saying, "This is a great deal for the paper and for us. "We expect it to benefit greatly from becoming part of the Tronc ecosystem," he said. The Daily News has showed more restraint than the rival Murdoch-owned New York Post, embracing a populist liberalism in response to the rise of Donald Trump as a candidate and president, David says. A hint of gloating was evident in The Post's story in today's edition about the sale. It wrote that The News and its billionaire owner, Mortimer Zuckerman, struck a deal with Tronc "to essentially give away its business." The Post writes: "In the past few years, the paper's staff has gone through layoffs and buyouts. And while most newspapers have experienced drops in circulation, the News' has plummeted." Meanwhile, The New York Times offers that the sale of the newspaper "may also signal the end of the political influence of [Zuckerman], who often used the paper's bold, front-page headline — known as 'the wood' — for commentary about candidates and politicians, locally and nationally.
"The News once boasted A-list columnists including Liz Smith, Jimmy Breslin and Pete Hamill, but it has been worn down by a grinding tabloid war with the Rupert Murdoch-controlled New York Post. And like the rest of the newspaper industry, The News has been battered and bruised by the internet age, when the equivalent of pithy headlines — a staple of The News — come a mile a minute on Twitter."

Kevin Convey, a former editor-in-chief at The Daily News who is now an assistant professor of journalism at Quinnipiac University, said the sale of the paper to Tronc "highlights the continuing struggles of former print powerhouses to adapt to the digital age." "In buying it, Tronc is betting on two things: That it can execute the pivot to digital production and distribution faster and more effectively than the Daily News did — thus reducing its multi-million-dollar-a-year losses — and that its former big-time print platforms in LA, Chicago and, now, New York, will prove attractive enough to national advertisers to help float the boat as it tries to do so," Convey wrote in an email to NPR. Tronc also owns large regional papers, including The Los Angeles Times, The Baltimore Sun, as well as newspapers in South Florida and Hartford, among others. Tribune Publishing owned The Daily News for decades before selling it a generation ago to Zuckerman.
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