Friday, July 8, 2011

A hot Summer for the French press

The Summer will be long and hot for the French press. Here are some matters of reflexion for the various actors of this endangered profession.

First Presstalis. On July 1st, Lagardère dropped out of this unhappy organization and was replaced by the cooperatives of dailies and magazines. However, the yearly deficit of the firm is close to 20 million € and the press is unable to face such losses. There are two possible solutions: to admit a new partner, which seems unlikely in spite of contacts with the Post or to reduce drastically the exposure of Presstalis by dropping the delivery of national newspapers. the regional newspapers are working on proposals to take in charge this delivery and the legislation has been modified by the Parliament to allow this proceeding. A fine opening but it will leave Aujourd'hui and L'Equipe, the two dailies of Group Amaury without any delivery support out of Paris as the regional press consider them as competitors. Moreover, it remains to be seen if Presstalis can survive by delivering only magazines, while it is in competition with MLP which is cheaper and attracts a growing number of publications.

The fate of Presstalis is very much in jeopardy and the many union strikes won't improve the situation.

Second, le Monde. After 3 months of discussions, Louis Dreyfus has not managed to reach a full agreement with the two unions that operate in the printing unit of the daily. However, he should not be blamed for this lackluster performance.