One of the senior Dow Jones (NYSE: DJ) executives to leave as News Corp. (NYSE: NWS) is swooping in is Gordon Crovitz, the Publisher of The Wall Street Journal, EVP of Dow Jones & Company, and president of the Company’s Consumer Media Group. He will leave as the acquisition closes next week, and his departure was officially announced on Friday morning. I spoke to him later in the day on his thoughts as he leaves Dow Jones after 27 years (he began his career at Dow Jones in 1980 as a summer intern).
He didn’t give away much in the interview, as you’ll see below. The real picture is probably in a book coming sometime in the future.
Why now?: Starting in early 2006, we set out to integrate our journalism brands across print and online. I think at this point, we led the media industry in terms of an integrated structure, whether it is our news dept, or our marketing/circulation and advertising depts. And we have seen the results. We went from losing money for WSJ in 2005, to making a bit of money in 2006, to being strongly profitable in 2007. Dow Jones and the Journal are very well positioned. I am very happy to have played some role in that. More after the jump…
Would you have liked to stay?: I think the goals that I set when I started couple of years ago (as the publisher of WSJ) in this role really have been achieved. I wish the new management and new ownership all the best.
What about WSJ.com’s future?: I think News Corp has a range of options. It is up to them how they choose to proceed, and what sort of mix of paid and free they want to go ahead with.
Marketwatch’s future: My view is that Marketwatch and WSJ’s audience has been different. The Journal brand stands for broad business news, while the Marketwatch brand is for people who wanted to follow the daily happenings of the market. Marketwatch has been a key part of adding tens of millions of dollars in profits to our digital operations, and that is largely through serving this different audience.
Enterprise side and its value to News Corp: You would have to ask them. Among the achievements I am most proud of is the formation of Factiva.
The future of the newspaper industry: I remain fundamentally optimistic about strong news brands, whatever medium they’re in. The challenge for newspapers is how to rethink newspapers for how readers now consume news in this digital age. Also, how do they make the transition in advertising so that they remain profitable businesses, so that they can retain the journalism, which is the core value that they deliver. I think we will see more and more experimentation from traditional media companies with different business models.
What’s next for you?: My main requirement for my next job is that it is still a job where the first thing I read in the morning is paidContent.org [Ed: For real].