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Stressing the importance of local journalism

A trust in markets for local journalism

A deal showing trust in markets for local journalism was announced when Axios, focusing on newsletter-like local news services across the US, agreed to be sold to regional US newspaper company Cox Enterprises.

The cash deal of USD 525 million was announced by Axios that was started 2016 by the same persons who 2007 started news outlet Politico that recently was sold to Springer as parts of the German publisher’s ambition to grow on the English-speaking market.

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Axios Local has news service in 24 US cities and has announced plans to expand its coverage to 30 US cities by the end of 2022. Eventually, it hopes to be in hundreds of cities, Axios said.

“A big part of this investment is to expand the number of local markets we serve. Local watchdog journalism is so important to the health of any community, and no one is more focused on building that out nationally than Axios,” Cox chairman and CEO Alex Taylor said.

The deal includes an additional new investment of $25 million in Axios’ media arm to help the company expand across its local, national and subscription news products.

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The company will spin off its software arm, Axios HQ, into a separate, stand-alone company led by Axios president Roy Schwartz.

This is great for Axiosfor our shareholders and American journalism. It allows us to think and operate generationally, with a like-minded partner — and build something great and durable that lives long after we are gone,” Axios CEO Jim VandeHei said.

Axios launched with a mission to deliver news to professionals in a simple format that helps them get smarter faster across an array of topics, including politics, science, business, health, tech and media.

The news service itself reported that most of Axios’ revenue comes from high-level, brand awareness advertising to big companies across its national newsletters, its website and podcasts.

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Axios has over 500 employees, with nearly 100 who work for Axios HQ and over 75 who work for Axios Local. Axios HQ plans to more than double in size next year and triple its revenue.

Politico, which the founders of Axios built and led until 2015, sold for roughly $1 billion in 2021, a price tag that valued the company at roughly 5x its annual revenue.

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