Home' The Channel Magazine : National Newsagent April 2012 Contents National Newsagent April 2012
FAIRFAX TO CUT
Copies of The Age and The Sydney
Morning Herald could soon be harder
to find in some newsagents as Fairfax
begins to deliberately cut its newspaper
Chief Executive Greg Hywood
announced that Fairfax will reduce the
number of newspapers it sells and
channel the savings into its digital
But the media company remains
undecided about charging for online
content for each of its mastheads.
Mr Hywood indicated that regional
areas of NSW and Victoria would soon
have to rely on online versions of The Age
and SMH as display advertisers targeted
consumers in the major cities.
“We’re going to be deliberately
reducing our circulation which enables us
to scale back on our printing,” Mr Hywood
told a business lunch in Sydney.
“It enables us to take a chunk of the
$450 million in ink and paper that it
takes to do that and to invest in the new
technologies and digital businesses which
will grow our business.
“T hat’s what we’re going to do.”
The move comes after Fairfax launched
a quarterly media audience report last
month in a bid to show the number of
people viewing Fairfax content on digital
devices and print editions.
It also follows a fierce readership
war with rival News Limited to attract
higher spending print advertisers as
metropolitan newspaper circulations
continue to plunge.
“We’re not going to spend $10 to send
a paper to northern NSW and charge
people two dollars, we’re not going to
spend one million dollars on a promotion
campaign and sell an extra 10,000 papers
at $100 a paper, ” Mr Hywood said.
“T he old notion of mass distribution is
about the past, it’s not about the future.
“T his enables us to invest in our content
and invest in our journalists.”
Fairfax claims its metro print and web
audience has increased by 26 percent in
the past five years with the growth of digital
platforms and its total audience is now more
than seven million.
Despite the difficult economic conditions
and “advertising recession” , Mr Hywood
was upbeat about the company’s future
prospects and said there had been an 18
percent increase in the price of online
advertisements in the past year.
But a decision on whether to charge
readers for access to Fairfax’s online content
is yet to be made.
Mr Hywood said Fairfax was doing “very
detailed and complex work” on pricing and
bundling in relation to charging for online
“We’ll make choices when we receive that
information but I’ve got to be convinced,” he
While the Australian Financial Review was
doing well with online subscriptions, Mr
Hywood said he was reluctant to close down
a growing audience for its other mastheads.
He also said Fairfax would be open
to changing the traditional broadsheet
newspaper format to tabloid if the market
NEWS TO CEASE
News Limited has announced that it
will cease publication of three community
newspapers and a weekly magazine on
Queensland’s Sunshine Coast.
The Noosa Journal and Weekender
were acquired by News Limited in 2006
and 2007 respectively and extended to
include local editions in Maroochydore
and Caloundra subsequently. Next week’s
editions will be their last.
News Limited’s Managing Director of
newspapers and digital products Jerry
Harris said, “It is with regret that we are
closing these titles, but with continuing
slow trading conditions on the Sunshine
Coast the reality is that they are no longer
“News will continue to have a strong
presence in the region as the Courier-Mail
will strengthen its bureau to improve local
coverage, and maintain its involvement
with keynote Sunshine Coast sporting and
The Gillard Government has announced
the establishment of a Federal Small
Business Commissioner, which it says
will act as an advocate for and provide
information to Australia’s 2.7 million
“T he small business sector has been
calling for better advocacy, advice and
information at the federal level and the
Government has listened,” Prime Minster
Julia Gillard said.
She says the commissioner will
provide small business with a new voice
to Government, provide a ‘one stop shop’
for services and information, and ensure
the interests of small business remain
at “the forefront of Government policy
“ The old notion of
is about the past,
it’s not about the
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