Creative Destruction and Innovation in the Newspaper Industry

With the destruction of older newspaper businesses such as the Youngstown Vindicator comes adaptation and the creation of innovative business models and collaboration by the Business Daily Journal, Google, and McClatchy.
Creative Destruction and innovation - lessons in the newspaper industry. Coventry League blogentary.

Remember Coventry League’s blogentary from a couple of weeks ago regarding ways to not only survive the newspaper apocalypse but also thrive amidst the disruption?

Well, here’s an update about the 150-year-old Youngstown Vindicator’s announcing that it will “Stop the Presses” at the end of August 2019 and the dynamics in that market. It’s an example of business cycles, entrepreneurship, and an Austrian economics school of thought (creative destruction and innovation à la economist Joseph Schumpeter; Friedrich Hayek more generally).

Thoughts about disruptive innovation by economist Joseph Schumpeter.

The example – at least concerning the Business Journal Daily – references one of the strategies that Coventry League suggested in order to thrive as a niche news media platform: incorporate honest, transparent, investigative journalism.

Creative Destruction and Innovation

In this case, one company – because of its inherent cost structures and management philosophy – decided that it could not make a sustainable profit in the news media business even as a digital media platform. Thankfully, no Zombie businesses were subsequently created by the use of forced taxpayer bailouts and subsidies (explicit or otherwise).

As such, this void of a local daily has attracted new entrants practically overnight:


  1. Well, this is awkward. We mentioned McClatchy had stepped into the Youngstown-Warren market (Oct. 2029) after the demise of Vindicator. Less than four months later…McClatchy files for Chapter 11 bankruptcy!

    Here are some extracts from the article by Business Journal Daily – Youngstown:

    * McClatchy operates 30 daily news organizations as well as the Youngstown-based Mahoning Matters, launched in October in the wake of The Vindicator closing.

    * The new owners, pending court approval, would be Chatham Asset Management LLC, a hedge fund

    * McClatchy has received $50 million debtor-in-possession financing from Encina Business Credit.

    * McClatchy expects fourth-quarter revenues of $183.9 million, down 14% from a year earlier. Its 2019 revenue is anticipated to be down 12.1% from the previous year.

    * According to court documents, PBGC is the company’s largest unsecured creditor, owed $530.4 million. The list includes Bank of New York Mellon, $14.9 million; Gannett Supply Corp., $1.65 million, and Google Inc., which is owed $800,000.

    Read the entire article titled “News Publisher McClatchy Files for Bankruptcy Protection” dated February 13, 2020 here:

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