Threat to local papers looms

Deep do-do for regional and local papers, famously more popular on the island in Ireland than anywhere else. Even so, that lean machine Johnston Press, the UK’s third largest regional newspaper group and owners of the (Belfast) Newsletter, the free sheet Belfast News and the Derry Journal and 11 former Morton local papers is suffering a massive loss in advertising revenue, of “ more than 35% in the first months of 2009. as overall revenue fell by more than 12% last year.”

Johnston’s are trying to offload 14 papers in the Republic after having gone through a rash spate of acquisition there and elsewhere om the last few years, including netting the troubled Scotsman.

The total package is expected to fetch upwards of €70m, leaving Johnston Press with a hefty writedown on the estimated €250m it spent compiling its Irish portfolio.

If the banks turn up their noses – and what do you think? – can the sale or even closure of some NI papers including the ailing Newsletter be long delayed?

Discover more from Slugger O'Toole

Subscribe to get the latest posts to your email.

Categories Uncategorised

We are reader supported. Donate to keep Slugger lit!

For over 20 years, Slugger has been an independent place for debate and new ideas. We have published over 40,000 posts and over one and a half million comments on the site. Each month we have over 70,000 readers. All this we have accomplished with only volunteers we have never had any paid staff.

Slugger does not receive any funding, and we respect our readers, so we will never run intrusive ads or sponsored posts. Instead, we are reader-supported. Help us keep Slugger independent by becoming a friend of Slugger. While we run a tight ship and no one gets paid to write, we need money to help us cover our costs.

If you like what we do, we are asking you to consider giving a monthly donation of any amount, or you can give a one-off donation. Any amount is appreciated.