OLD Media Moves

The task ahead for Bloomberg running Bloomberg

September 4, 2014

Posted by Chris Roush

Jonathan Mahler of the New York Times examines the task ahead for Michael Bloomberg in returning to the top spot of his financial data and media company.

Mahler writes, “If Mr. Bloomberg is not a traditional media tycoon, Bloomberg L.P. is not a traditional media company. About 80 percent of its revenue comes from its terminals, making it more of a financial services and data provider. The media operation is effectively an expensive hood ornament.

“Inside the company, the party line is that Mr. Bloomberg does not care about influence for the sake of influence. The goal of increasing the company’s visibility is not about satisfying the former mayor’s ego, Mr. Doctoroff and others say, but rather increasing the demand for terminals. The logic is that the more visible Bloomberg becomes, the more likely newsmakers will be to give its reporters news that moves markets. That news goes out to terminal subscribers first, thus giving them an advantage over other brokers and traders — and presumably making the terminals more valuable.

“‘If we only wrote for our terminal audience, then a lot of people who make news aren’t going to come to us first with their news,’ Mr. Doctoroff said in an interview on Thursday.

“Whether Bloomberg’s new products — which will exist on a variety of media platforms — can become popular destinations is another matter. In the broader media world, the Bloomberg brand has historically had limited resonance, and it has become more difficult than ever to stand out in the marketplace.”

Read more here.

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