David Montgomery promises paid-for digital future at Mecom newspapers

David Montgomery’s Mecom newspaper group is pushing ahead with plans to charge for content online – but not based around general or international news. Its new online payments strategy, to be unveiled with its annual results on 17 March, would rely on “much more specific content, unique content”, he told MediaGuardian.co.uk. Mecom, of which Montgomery is chief executive, publishes more than 300 titles in several European countries, mostly in the Netherlands, Denmark, Norway and Poland, and unveiled better-than-expected results in a trading update Thursday. “Scandinavians and in particular smaller papers in Norway are making faster strides in online revenue development,” Montgomery said. With a carefully planned digital strategy, he said, the company could make up for permanent losses in print ad revenue in the future, thanks also to a cost-cutting programme that had yielded about GBP 124m, well surpassing the company’s original target of GBP 67m. He was confident that Mecom’s digital strategy could earn enough to compensate for the predicted fall in print ad spend this year, which he put at 5 percent across Europe. Mecom had learned some lessons from the beginnings of its online pay strategy, he added – which has involved charging for “high grade” legal and financial information in its Polish newspaper business and an online paid-for magazine in Denmark – but 2010 would see a significant ramping up of the plan



One thought on “David Montgomery promises paid-for digital future at Mecom newspapers

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