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World Newspaper Summit meetings
India’s press boom on agenda
The historic first annual events of the World Association of Newspapers and News Publishers (WAN-IFRA), the 2009 summit meetings of the world’s press are all set to take place in the world’s biggest democracy, where the press is not only free and fiercely independent, but undergoing extraordinary growth.

To be held in Hyderabad (India) from Nov 30- Dec 03, 2009, these events will include: the62nd World Newspaper Congress, 16th World Editors Forum and Info Services Expo 09, apart from three annual WAN round table conferences on ‘press freedom’ ‘digital media’ and ‘young reader’. A good number of publishers, chief editors, CEOs, managing directors and other senior newspaper executives are expected in the city.


he secrets of the world’s highest read daily newspaper Dainik Jagran - with a certified print audience of an astonishing 54.5 million - will be among the fascinating ‘local’ stories to be told as the world’s press gathers for the World Newspaper Congress, World Editors Forum and Info Services Expo 2009 in Hyderabad (India).

Dainik Jagran, which tops the newspaper planet’s readership league, is only one example of a newspaper industry which continues to grow in leaps and bounds. Developing literacy and wealth are part but far from the story: great credit needs also to be given to Indian newspaper professionals, who are re-inventing the newspaper to keep it vibrant and compelling in the digital age. Their strategies will be examined in depth.

Participants at the annual summit meetings of the world’s press will hear from the publishers and editors of some of India’s most innovative companies, including: Mahendra Mohan Gupta, chairman/managing director and managing editor, and Sanjay Gupta, CEO and editor-in-chief, of Jagran Prakashan (Dainik Jagran); Ravi Dhariwal, CEO for publishing of Bennett, Coleman & Co (Times Group); Jaideep Bose, editor-in-chief of The Times of India; Tariq Ansari, managing director of Mid-Day Infomedia; Harinder Baweja, co-editor-in-chief of Tehelka; Aroon Purie, chairman & editor-in-chief of India Today; and many others.

In addition to the Indian presenters, WAN-IFRA is bringing international newspaper industry leaders to speak at the events, the global summit meetings of the world’s press. They include: Robert Thomson, editor-in-chief of Dow Jones and The Wall Street Journal; Andreas Wiele, president of BILD, Europe’s largest newspaper; Olivier Fleurot, the CEO of Publicis Events Worldwide and its public relations and corporate communications arm, PRCC - and former CEO of the Financial Times Group; Terry Horne, publisher and president, The Orange County Register, United States; Martim Figueiredo, publisher & editor-in-chief, ‘i’ daily newspaper, Portugal; Per Bowallius, president GISAB, Mitt i, the Swedish free weekly newspaper publisher; Alan Rusbridger, editor-in-chief, The Guardian, United Kingdom; Walter de Mattos, editor-in-chief, Lance, Brazil; Ferial Haffajee, editor-in-chief, Citypress, South Africa; Steve Engelberg, managing editor,, United States; and many more.

Info Services Expo, which runs concurrently with the World Newspaper Congress and World Editors Forum, goes from strength to strength. Over the years, it has become the leading Expo to meet the suppliers of content to the press and the providers of the technology required to distribute it over multiple platforms. This expo brings together the top management and editorial executives from the world’s newspapers and the suppliers who are investing their competences and skills to support the industry in producing better products and developing new services. As the testimonials from suppliers demonstrate in great style - this is the place to do real business and gain new customers and, very frequently, to discover and break into new, emerging markets.

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Freemium: a new revenue model for newspapers


radical transformation of the newspaper editorial and business models is underway, and it goes far beyond the current ‘pay wall’ debate about charging for on-line content. These strategies call for reorganising editorial and business departments, focusing on premium content, and above all, good storytelling, according to the Innovation International Media Consulting Group, which will make a major presentation around these ideas at the World Newspaper Congress, World Editors Forum and Info Services Expo 2009, to be held in Hyderabad, India, from Nov 30 - Dec 03.

The 2009 Global Report on Innovations in Newspapers is always a major attraction of the congress, forum and expo, the global summit meetings of the world’s press, but never more so than this year. “We outline the content propositions that can make you a lot of money,” said Juan Senor, a partner in Innovations.

Innovations is not an advocate of building ‘pay walls’ for current content. “All this talk about pay walls, we’ve been here before, we should ban the words,” said Senor. “You must create new spaces with new content propositions.”

“The newspaper formula that we’re still following is the formula that was developed by William Randolph Hearst and Joseph Pulitzer at the turn of the century. We need to reinvent that,” he said. “You need to offer different content propositions and different structures.”

The presentation, to a combined congress and forum audience of publishers, CEOs, chief editors, managing directors and other senior newspaper executives from around the world, will focus on actual cases of newspapers that are succeeding with a ‘freemium’ model ­ combining free content with premium content that people are willing to pay for. “What people want in the morning now is not the news from the day before,” said Senor.

In print, newspapers should open with “really clever news summaries” followed by exceptional, compelling storytelling. Online, news and opinion will likely remain free, Senor contends, supported by advertising. But archives and other premium content can be created and exploited in new ways. For example, because newspapers remain a credible information source, customers would be willing to pay for specialised reports ­ street reports for house hunters, cosmetic surgery reports for people considering plastic surgery, consumer reports, school guides, and so on.

But this will require a complete reorganisation of the newspaper company, what Senor calls “integration from the newsroom to the boardroom.”

In the congress and forum presentation, Innovations will show how to transform news organisations from being product-driven to audience-driven. Even traditional newsroom titles must change ­ editors-in-chief becomes “chief content coordinators”, while section editors transform into “macro editors” focused on specific audiences ­ business people, parents, etc. “The future of newspapers is premium ­ like haute couture rather than ready-to-wear.”

The 2009 Global Report on Innovations in Newspapers is one of dozens of congress and forum presentations on cutting-edge business and editorial strategies.


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