I’m intrigued by John George’s business plan of going head to head with the Times Picayune in New Orleans, a business strategy that literally bucks 30 years of industry consolidation trends. The talent Georges has poached from NOLA Media Group to beef up the New Orleans edition of the Advocate did not come on the cheap. Since the Newhouse pay scale is reputed to be the industry’s most generous, even in these austere days for the print media business, the employee morale impacts of that fact regarding the newbies in NOLA on the staff in Baton Rouge is undeniable as journalists are only human too:
Baton Rouge Advocate to reduce workforce through buyouts of veteran employees ~ AP Story via NOLA Media Group
Maybe we’re the Buffoons here at Slabbed for failing to see the wisdom of making a major investment in a declining industry in a declining advertising market. In the construction market, when this type of thing happens it is usually a strategic play where one of the two competitors ends up buying the other out. History tells us that the Newhouse clan will not sell the Times Picayune.
The winner is usually the one with the most net worth to throw away in the competition. Using that metric alone indicates Georges is pissing in the wind since assets in a declining industry can usually be bought on the super cheap via auction. We’ll see.