Here’s what the Sun-Times’ new CEO wants people to do – Marketing/media News

on Aug22

21 August 2017 | 6:47 pm

New Chicago Sun-Times CEO Edwin Eisendrath stepped up to the podium this afternoon with one main message: Subscribe, subscribe, subscribe.

“Everyone knows the business is in trouble,” he said, referring particularly to the business of the Chicago newspaper, which has gone through multiple rounds of layoffs, a filing for bankruptcy protection and two changes of ownership in the past 10 years.

In July, Eisendrath led a group of investors that included the Chicago Federation of Labor in purchasing the 173-year-old newspaper for $1.​

One answer to the paper’s financial woes? The investors’ simultaneous July acquisition of the Chicago-based Answers Media digital production center. Eisendrath called the acquisition a “giant step” in catching up to a new, multi-channel media environment.

“Now our new news organization has the capacity to deliver stories online, in print, graphically, in audio and video formats, and directly to your smartphones,” he told an audience of about 150 today at a City Club of Chicago event.

“We’re building capacities that were left to atrophy, advertising and business functions are being rebuilt,” he said.

After a short speech that consisted mainly of calls to subscribe and compliments to Sun-Times journalists and staff, Eisendrath held a question-and-answer session where he addressed such issues as the conservative-leaning Sinclair Broadcast Group’s proposed buyout of Tribune Media—”I suspect what they do in the small markets everywhere will not be welcomed” in Chicago, he said—and the recent appointment of journalist Chris Fusco to lead the Sun-Times newsroom, after former publisher and editor-in-chief Jim Kirk hopped ship to work at rival Tronc.

The former Lincoln Park alderman also reiterated that the Sun-Times intends to respect its $25 million printing and distribution contract with Tronc through 2019.

“It’s our goal to honor it,” he said. “It has a termination date, and we’re going to outlive it.”



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