How are newspapers going in Italy?

How are newspapers going in Italy?

Numbers, trends and scenarios on sales and not only of the major Italian newspapers. The post by Nicola Borzi, journalist expert in economics and finance, already at Sole 24 Ore, taken from his Facebook profile

"Why buy newspapers? It's a sign of civilization to leave them on newsstands, ”explained Massimo D'Alema to Prima Comunicazione in 1995. It took some time, twenty-five years, but the prophecy of the ex-prime minister has now come true dramatically. The Italians took it so much that not even a pandemic like they had seen for a century has managed to boost the sales of the main national newspapers.

Also in April, according to the monthly publishers' statements collected by Accertamenti Diffusione Stampa (Ads), the newsstands certainly did not shine for customer queues: all together, the newspapers surveyed by Ads showed just over one million 718 thousand paper copies sold in average every day, down 24% on April 2019. But if in the midst of the coronavirus lockdown the paper slams, the annual growth of 17% recorded by the 219 thousand "valid" total digital copies (those sold at least 30% of the cover price of the card) was certainly not enough to recover the waterline. Put together, the hard copies and digital copies sold on average every day in April stopped at just over one million 949 thousand, down 20.8% on the two million 460 thousand of a year earlier. Join this valley of tears with the abyss of advertising sales (in the first quarter of the year, advertising revenues fell by 17.7% on an annual basis for the newspapers) and it will be evident because many observers believe that the time is now near of having to chant the de profundis for several glorious national newspapers.

The list of badly placed newspapers is longer than the Leporello catalog of Mozart's memory. Corriere della Sera , a Cairo battleship under the helm of Luciano Fontana, sold a total of 215,776 copies between paper and digital in April, down 6.73% year-on-year but recovering 2.84% over March. The Republic of the Gedi group, in the last few weeks of Carlo Verdelli's conduct before the expulsion by John Elkann with the arrival of Maurizio Molinari, did better by limiting the annual contraction of the total sales to 4.24%, thanks to the boom 21% of the digital copies which recovered 9.4% of the paper copies, also recording a good + 3.34% over the month of March. The same cannot be said for La Stampa (Gedi) which closed the month of the handover from Molinari to Massimo Giannini with 101,984 total copies sold, down 16.74% on an annual basis and 3.14% on the previous month. Driving the bleeding was the collapse of sales in newsstands, which in April showed -18.94% to 92,948 copies.

IlSole24Ore continues to sink, which with Fabio Tamburini – the third director in three years – does not seem to be able to find identity or appreciation: in April the salmon-colored newspaper of Confindustria (and of the creditor banks led by IntesaSanpaolo) sold between paper and online 98,445 copies, down 14.71% on an annual basis and in minimal recovery of 1.73% compared to March. Here the downturn was across the board: on an annual basis -18.95% paper sales, -8.55% sales of "valid" digital copies, -6.60% total sales of digital copies. Compared to March, despite the turbulence on the markets that were once the driving force of the circulation, the Sun has recovered only 156 paper copies and 845 "valid" digital copies more. Compared to April 2019, the Sun sells almost 17 thousand copies a day.

The Avvenire , the newspaper of the Italian Episcopal Conference (CEI), is also bad. In April the newspaper of bishops sold 83,228 copies, both digital and paper, down 18.7% on an annual basis and 6.7% on a monthly basis. But to make an impression is the beaten dive of the Messenger : the newspaper of Caltagirone, once the symbol of the capital, in April remained at 60,085 copies between paper and online. Compared to a year earlier, it lost 28.94% of the total and even 32.27% of the paper ones. It will be enough to make ends meet the victory of the director Vito Germano Virman Cusenza, in the saddle for eight years now, who on Sunday 31 May collected the state of crisis from the Editorial Committee and the request to access 20 early retirements, more than two days a month layoffs?

Who smiles for the wind in the stern is Marco Travaglio: the editor of Il Fatto Quotidiano in April reported the overall sales of the newspaper published by the Seif at 53,589 copies, between paper and digital, with a growth of 33% on an annual basis and 25% on a monthly basis. Both the copies sold at newsstands (+ 5.94% on an annual basis, + 17.58% compared to March at 29,052) and the "valid" digital ones, almost doubled to 24,016 (+ 91.42% on an annual basis and + 35.73% on a monthly basis).

Bittersweet trend for Il Giornale of the Berlusconi family: the newspaper directed by Daniela Santanché's ex-boyfriend Alessandro Sallusti in April posted total sales of 41,854 copies, down 8.79% year-on-year but recovering by 7.42 % over March, thanks to the monthly recovery of hard copies (+ 4.13%) and the boom in "valid" digital copies (+ 76.62%). Vittorio Feltri smiles with all dentures: in April Libero of the Angelucci family sold a total of 30,152 copies between paper and digital, marking + 20% on an annual basis and + 17.5% compared to March. The trend was positive for paper copies (+ 17.48% compared to April 2019), with the doubling of the "valid" digital ones (+ 99.5%, 1,586 copies). It holds the waterline La Verità : in April total sales of 24,638 copies, + 1.5% between paper and digital compared to the same month last year but -1.65% compared to the month of March. For Maurizio Belpietro's newspaper there was the paradox of good newsstand performance (+ 5.85% on an annual basis and + 9.42% on a monthly basis) ruined by the collapse of digital copies (-76.9% sales of those "valid" on an annual basis and even -89.5% on a monthly basis). The sad crisis of Tempo degli Angelucci closes the list: the second Roman newspaper, directed by Franco Bechis, in April between paper and digital recorded total sales for 8,719 copies compared to 13,704 of the previous year. A meltdown that means -36.38% on an annual basis and -19.3% compared to March.

This is a machine translation from Italian language of a post published on Start Magazine at the URL on Sat, 13 Jun 2020 05:44:21 +0000.