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Panpa Bulletin : November December 2006
Newspapers on the way out? Not likely, say US bosses Popular opinion suggests that the high volume printed daily newspaper will be dead in 10-15 years. But plenty of insiders aren't so sure, as evidenced in Inter- national Herald Tribune publisher and New York Times Company vice-chairman Michael Golden's musings at this year's Cannes Lions International Advertising Festival. It's not that cut and dried, he said, that big, cover-all print titles would fall by the wayside in favour of electronically downloaded pick-and-mix content. Why, he pondered, are publishers were still factoring printing presses into their long term investment strategies? Newspapers have de- veloped a reader and advertiser loyalty ideal for leveraging across to digital media. It's just a matter of managing it appropriately. "The challenge is in the business model, not in the culture," he said. Those who posit the download-to-order model as the future of news delivery fail to take into account the material that newspa- pers allow people to luck into. "There's the news that you know that you want to find -- like the sports results or stock prices. But the news you find by serendipity should not be underestimated." According to Financial Times and MSNBC reports, Mr Golden added that the sale of individual stories over the internet would not simply change the nature of newspapers, but compromise the hefty investments publish- ers have made in broad-scale newsgathering. Dow Jones chief shares optimism Dow Jones chief Richard F Zannino was also optimistic about the future of print newspa- pers -- on the condition that the industry "em- braces the internet and continues to produce quality journalism in the multiple formats desired by today's readers," according to a report from the Society of American Business Editors And Writers (SABEW). "It's not all doom and gloom, or at least I don't believe it is," he told attendees of SABEW's annual conference in May. "I believe that with the [profit] margins, the cyclical recovery, with continued innovation and change -- that there is an upside for the news- paper business." Newspapers' superior newsroom standards give them a credibility others have to work to establish, he said. "That gives us an edge over anybody else online." "It s not all doom and gloom. With the pro t margins, the cyclical recovery, with continued innovation and change -- there is an upside for the newspaper business." NYT s Michael Golden - if print is dead, why is everyone still buying printing presses? Dow s Rich Zannino -- future success hinges on quality journalism on multiple platform. Circulation drops? Market stagnation? It seems no one told the Asian news- paper industry, whose product on the whole remains on the rise, according to Ifra's midyear report. The Association's research has led it to conclude the Asian industry will grow over the next 5-10 years, as Asian GDP figures swell and countries like India and China develop prosperous middle classes. Pundits expect this sector to exceed 250 m people within 20 years. Most Asian newspapers currently gener- ate about 50 pc of revenues through adver- tising; in India it's up to 80 pc. With these countries' GDPs expected to grow fourfold in the same period, Ifra expect advertising to rise in parallel. As the industry grows, so too will invest- ments in production facilities to raise content and image quality, as well as staff training to keep up with the change. Asian newspaper industry de es global trends APN first half pro ts up9pc Thanks to strong advertising demand at its regionals in Australia and New Zealand, APN News & Media Ltd announced a first-half rise in profit of 9 pc. Net income for the six months to June 30 was A$72.1 million, up from A$66.1 million year-on-year. Sales were up 1 pc to A$638.5 million. For sharehold- ers, the announcement spells a dividend of 9.7 cents a share, up from 8.8 cents a year ago. APN is 40 pc owned by Tony O'Reilly's Independent News & Media Plc. November--December 2006 PANPA BULLETIN | 15 NEWS