The CEO has been heard from, and he is the stupid cousin Warren Buffet warned about.
Like many CEOs who don't understand their business, he masters the jargon, but none of the substance. Frankly, the "we'll make it through and come out just fine" line does not cut it with me as an investor and I doubt it cuts it with those here who are employees or former employees of MNI. So far I have seen no plan from this man for making the transition to the digital future. I see plans for continued print. But, nothing to justify that. I see words that praise the internet. Yet no plan to profit from it. According to Pruitt, MNI had $200 million in internet revenues last year. Great. That is 10.5% of all revenues. What he fails to recognize or address is the canibalization of MNI's print service by offering the same thing for free online. He gives the customer no reason to buy the print version. That indicates a total lack of understanding of his business.
Why, Mr. Pruitt, should a customer buy the print edition of your paper when he can get the electronic edition for free? (And apparently wade through fewer ads?) Until someone can answer that simple question, your revenue struggles will continue. Advertisers know they can reach the target audience online. Readers, the target audience, are online. Your product is being left behind. Fix that problem and you will not be the stupid cousin. But right now, you sir are the stupid cousin and you are running the newspaper.
Well said. (Photo credit: daylife.com)