OLD Media Moves

Reorganization at Dow Jones & Co.

January 4, 2010


Dow Jones & Co. CEO Les Hinton sent out the following e-mail to the company’s staff. The company owns The Wall Street Journal, Dow Jones Newswires, Barron’s and Marketwatch.com.

“As 2010 begins, I have decided to put in place a new organizational structure that aligns Dow Jones for the challenges and opportunities ahead.

“With immediate effect, we will cease operating as two groups and merge the enterprise and consumer divisions into a unified business. This will put us in the best position to pursue the single purpose of maintaining and strengthening our place as the world’s pre-eminent provider of news and business information.

“This reorganization will result in several changes:

҉ۢTodd Larsen becomes president of Dow Jones. He is now responsible for all commercial elements of the combined consumer and enterprise businesses.

҉ۢStephen Daintith becomes chief operating officer of Dow Jones. In his new role, Stephen will work closely with Todd and me on our strategic development as well as the efficient structuring of a combined Dow Jones. Stephen will retain the job of chief financial officer with responsibility for finance, IT, and other administrative departments.

“•Clare Hart has decided to leave the company. Clare has been a dedicated and much-valued executive in the two years since I joined Dow Jones. I have greatly valued Clare’s advice, support, and hard work, and wish her well in the future.

“Under the new structure Todd and Stephen will continue to report to me, as will Robert Thomson, Paul Gigot, Ed Finn, Mark Jackson, Greg Giangrande, and Ian Weston. The Local Media Group will also continue reporting to me.

“Reporting to Todd will be his current team plus Clare’s direct reports. In addition, Michael Rooney and the advertising team, Joe Vincent and the production and operations group, and Ann Sarnoff with her colleagues from Ventures will report to Todd. Neal Lipschutz of Newswires, until now reporting to Robert and Clare, will report solely to Robert.

“Todd, Stephen, Greg, and I will meet soon with colleagues across the company to provide more detail about our plans, but I want briefly today to explain why this change is right for us.

“To answer one obvious question, this change emphatically is not driven by a need or desire to reduce costs. It is happening because of a belief that by pooling our collective energy and creativity, Dow Jones will find new and better ways to develop the products that distinguish us in the market. A unified organization also will create more opportunity for our best and brightest people to flourish.

“To be successful, we need a structure and focus that makes us faster and better than our rivals in identifying and meeting our customers’ needs. We need a structure that supports our ambition to serve customers irrespective of platform or distribution channel.

“World-class content remains the bedrock of everything we do, and under Robert Thomson’s leadership we have already made great progress merging our news operations.

“Now we need the rest of the company to follow this lead.

“For example:

“1. We have outstanding technological expertise across the company but need to combine our product development efforts. In a world of rapidly evolving technology, this is vital. To support the peerless quality of our journalism, we must provide state-of-the-art applications. This is essential to meet the demands of diverse enterprises eager for the right information to drive their solutions and their business.

“2. We must also work together in marketing what we do, providing a unified voice to customers. Whether our products are created and offered by the old ‘enterprise’ or ‘consumer’ groups, we must remember that the end user is often the same person and make sure our appeal contemplates all our possibilities.

“To make sure we create an organization best shaped for the future, we will take a few weeks to set the final structure under Todd. We ask for your patience, input, and focus during this transition.

“We have just completed a year when we found ways to improve our business despite one of the worst periods for media companies in decades. The Wall Street Journal became America’s top-selling newspaper. At the same time, we have grown our print and online circulation revenue by double digits, grown online ad revenue, and, we believe, taken share across all our major advertising efforts. We have launched regional Newswires and Web sites in Europe and Asia and launched a Japanese-language Web site. In India, we are about to launch a major new mobile offering. For enterprise customers, we debuted numerous new products to tap specific markets within the business community.

“None of these achievements avoids the truth that we need discipline and diligence on the road ahead. But we are at the start of an era of ambitious global growth and now have the organization to channel all the energy and outstanding innovation of Dow Jones.”

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