Tribune Publishing Company announced financial results March 4 for the fourth quarter and full year ending December 29, 2019. The reported excluded operationsTribune no longer owns, including the Los AngelesTimes, San Diego Union-Tribune and other assets of the California News Group and forsalebyowner.com.

Fourth quarter 2019 total revenues were $252.3 million, down $31.2 million or 11% compared to $283.5 million for fourth quarter 2018. The decrease primarily reflects M segment (composed of the company’s media groups excluding their digital revenues and related expenses, except digital subscription revenues when bundled with a print subscription) revenue declines of $30.1 million and a $4.9 million revenue decrease associated with the company's transition service agreement with the California properties, partially offset by $2.9 million in increased digital-only subscription revenue.Total revenues for the full year 2019 were $983.1 million, down 4.6% from 2018.

Fourth quarter 2019 total advertising revenue and digital advertising revenue were $105.8 million and $25.8 million, respectively. Excluding the impact associated with the 2018 agreement with Cars.com to convert Tribune Publishing's eight affiliate markets into Cars.com's direct retail channel, total digital advertising revenue would have increased 4% year-over-year.

Adjusted EBITDA was $30.8 million in the fourth quarter of 2019, versus $46.5 million in the fourth quarter of 2018. Full year adjusted EBITDA of $101.4 million increased $7.5 million or 8% over 2018.

Digital-only subscribers increased 33.6% to 334,000 at the end of the fourth quarter 2019, up from 250,000 at the end of the fourth quarter 2018.

PIA, TAGA cancel

events

Printing Industries ofAmerica (PIA) and theTechnicalAssociation of the Graphic Arts (TAGA) announced that theTAGA AnnualTechnical Conference slated for March 15-18 in Oklahoma City was canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic.

PIA has also canceled the 2020 Continuous Improvement Conference set for April 5-8 in Columbus, Ohio.

PIA and TAGA are working to organize virtual options. Updates will be posted at taga.org/conference and ci.printing.

Plain Dealer to cut 22

The Plain Dealer (Cleveland) will be cutting 22 newsroom employees, the paper reported. The employees will be notified on March 23.

“The reason is strictly financial,” read a March 9 note from Tim Warsinskey, editor.The paper will still be printed every day and delivered on Wednesday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday.

Advance Publications owns the paper.

News Media Alliance on shutdowns,

news industry

News Media Alliance President and CEO David Chavern provided the following statement March 16 in response to public officials across the country ordering the shut-down of "non-essential" businesses for periods of time in response to the COVID-19 health crisis:

“Public officials across the country have begun ordering the shut-down of ‘non-essential’ businesses for periods of time. The goal of these orders is to appropriately react to our COVID-19 health crisis. However, these orders can also lead to some confusion about their application to news publishing operations.

“It should be readily apparent that local news publishers are carrying out an absolutely essential function in conveying accurate, reliable and critical information to the public at a time of great need. Many consumers are using our digital products, which can often be created and accessed remotely. However, there are still a large number of readers who rely exclusively on the production of our print products. Therefore, when issuing these orders, we would urge public officials to clarify that all news publishing operations are ‘essential,’ akin to grocery, pharmacy and other businesses critical to the public’s welfare.”

Drupa trade fair

postponed until

April 2021

The drupa trade fair scheduled for June 16-26 has been postponed until April 20-30, 2021, due to the coronavirus pandemic.

With the postponement, organizer Messe Dusseldorf is following the recommendation of the crisis management team of the German federal government to take into account principles of the Robert Koch Institute (Berlin) when assessing the risk of major events.

In addition, there was a ruling issued by the city of Dusseldorf on March 11 that generally prohibits major events with more than 1,000 participants present at the same time.

Those needing more info on drupa 2021 should contact Messe Dusseldorf North America at info@mdna.com or visit www.drupa.com or www.mdna.com

Publishers remove paywalls on

COVID-19 content

Publishers including The Atlantic, Philadelphia Inquirer, New York Times, Wall Street Journal and Bloomberg News have put coronavirus-related material outside of paywalls so non-subscribers can access it, Adweek reported.

“As a public service to our readers and community, we have lowered the paywall on some of our most critical stories so everyone can access this important information,” said a note from the ChicagoTribune.

Many smaller papers are doing the same.

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