Want to own your own weekly newspaper and call the shots?

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La Conner Weekly News


Date Posted June 28, 2024
Industry Newspapers
Specialty Not Specified
Job Status Full-time

Want to own your own weekly newspaper and call the shots? 2

Description:

The La Conner Weekly News in La Conner, Washington, is for sale: $250,000. Here’s your chance to be your own boss and make a difference in the community. 

The La Conner Weekly News is a vibrant, award-winning, and financially successful, 1,100 print run community-focused mail subscription newspaper. This is no unicorn!  Buy your next job and retire in it. Finish your career with a flourish. I have, and now I’m ready to retire. I’m Ken Stern, publisher of the La Conner Weekly News, and I’d love to talk with you about the details, so please call me at 360-202-4660.

I am inordinately proud of what I created. The La Conner Weekly News is the community’s independent, hometown, award-winning newspaper, a success in every way and one that is still growing into its revenue potential. The Weekly News platform proves that small town journalism can thrive.

Terms: 50% down, owner contract. 30-year fixed rate loan, monthly payments, 7 years with final balloon payment.

The business plan I created worked for me and included this exit strategy:

• On the News side: Weekly publishing an award-winning newspaper: all local content with a variety of stories, photos and locally focused editorials.

• On the Business side: Doubling revenues in four years, adding subscribers, and generating increasing net income.

• In the Community: Advocating for citizen involvement in government and a sustainable future.

• As the Publisher: Taking a leadership role championing the building of a new library and support of activist residents.

Each of these strategies and goals are present-day successes. The newspaper has blossomed beyond initial hopes in all regards. Recognition in the annual Washington Newspapers Publishers Association’s annual Best Newspaper Contest increased to 34 awards in 2022 up from 23 in 2021. Revenue was over $285,000 in 2023 up from $131,000 the last year of the previous owners. Weekly, 1,100 copies are printed and circulation is close to 900 paying mail subscribers, up over 10 percent from 2016. Subscriptions are up! I doubled sales in four years. It is a realistic revenue goal to reach $400,000 in another four years.

This paper has earned the respect of the community. It is known for its strong editorial voice focusing on local issues with an occasional pivot to national and international topics. It regularly attracts contributors, both professionals and passionate activists. It encourages engagement and participation in the community.

The next owners will gain a strong newspaper. They will find an extremely diverse community, with a thriving farming and a thriving art scene, and vital downtown core. Local and area merchants know they gain value by placing their advertising here. It is like Oz. The new owners will rub their eyes: Have they have stepped into a town straight out of a Norman Rockwell painting? There are no street lights and I walk half-a-mile to work every day.

And then there is the natural setting: My side of the Swinomish Channel is the eastern shore of the Pacific Ocean. The San Juan Islands beckon in Puget Sound while the Cascade Mountains loom 25 miles eastward. And yes, you are 75 miles north of Seattle and 90 miles south of Vancouver.

The Weekly News awaits mid-career journalists who love their work, believe in community, and want to advance their careers in a small, idyllic community. Come to La Conner, not to retire, but for the next phase of growing your career, stabilizing and, indeed, enhancing your professional and personal life.

Need to read more and reflect on your future in journalism? I have. Here is a Musings column I wrote in April:

https://www.laconnerweeklynews.com/story/2024/04/03/opinion/musings-on-the-editors-mind/10330.html

https://www.laconnerweeklynews.com/about

 

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