Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos has completely reinvented the way the Washington Post is run since buying the paper for $250 million in 2013.
But the biggest change Bezos is bringing to the 140-year old paper may be in the way it’s generating revenue: by selling software.
According to a New York Magazine feature about the Washington Post on Tuesday, the Post is hoping to bring in $100 million in annual revenue by selling some of its software, including the content management system (CMS) used by its editorial staff to publish articles.
Although it’s still in its early days, with only about a dozen local papers using the CMS so far, the Post clearly sees the business of selling software as a potential new revenue source. It just recently launched a new digital advertising platform which speeds up load time, while it’s also built an internal data analytics system that can track every little detail of reader behaviour online, the New York Magazine wrote.
Establishing this new source of revenue would be critical for the long term success of the paper. The Post is estimated to have generated $350 million in annual revenue, a significant drop from the $580 million in brought in in 2012, the report said. Bezos also plans to cut the paper’s $500 million budget by half within the next three years, it said.
“We can’t be an organisation that loses gobs and gobs of money,” Bezos told Shailesh Prakash, the Post’s chief technology officer, the report said.
Read the full New York Magazine story here.
Disclosure: Jeff Bezos is an investor in Business Insider through hispersonal investment company Bezos Expeditions.