Henry Faure Walker
CEO, Newsquest Media Group
Managing over 200 regional news brands with an audience of 30 million; and the “much brighter future” for local news, amidst the huge challenge of making it commercially sustainable
Henry Faure Walker is CEO of Newsquest, one of the largest publishers of regional news in the UK. It owns 165 newspapers and 40 magazines; with a combined reach of 6.5 million print readers and 30 million online; and employs 5,500 people across the country. In this in-depth interview, Henry discusses the challenge of making local news commercially sustainable, amidst a litany of challenges: the decline of classified advertising, reducing headcount, and the ‘frenemy’ relationship with the likes of Facebook and Google – who drive significant traffic, but also poach revenue. Amidst the challenges, Newsquest launched ten new papers last year – and Henry outlines his vision of a “much brighter future” for local journalism to maintain its vital role as a community voice: a pivot to digital marketing partnerships with neighbourhood businesses; and a new initiative with the BBC building the number of local democracy reporters, with nearly fifty of them already hired.
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