A1 Journal article (refereed), original research

How do media-owned national news agencies survive in the digital age? Business diversification in Austria Presse Agentur, Press Association and Tidningarnas Telegrambyrå

Open Access publication

Publication Details
Authors: Jääskeläinen Atte, Yanatma Servet
Publisher: SAGE Publications (UK and US)
Publication year: 2020
Language: English
Related Journal or Series Information: Journalism
ISSN: 1464-8849
eISSN: 1741-3001
JUFO-Level of this publication: 3
Open Access: Open Access publication
Location of the parallel saved publication: http://urn.fi/URN:NBN:fi-fe202002034277


This article explores three national news agencies in Europe (Press Association Group in the United Kingdom, Austria Presse Agentur in Austria and Tidningarnas Telegrambyrå in Sweden) in order to find the reasons why these agencies decided to transform themselves from traditional newswires into diversified media businesses. We ask why these agencies are able to operate under market principles, with substantial profit margins, and also to contribute to a sustainable national media system, while agencies in some other countries struggle. We draw on semi-structured interviews with 26 senior managers of the agencies and use several strategic management frameworks, including five forces and dynamic capabilities. We find that, in all three agencies, early crises led to a sensing of news agencies’ weakened bargaining power with media clients and the decline of industry attractiveness and triggered a timely search for new revenue sources through diversification. These successful new businesses are based on a strong news-agency brand, on technological capabilities, and on resources originating from the agencies’ firm relationship with the news media. We argue that, in all three cases, visionary leadership and an ability to orchestrate a new relationship with media owners have been key capabilities created in these early crises.

Last updated on 2020-23-03 at 12:15