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NATIONAL TRUST LAUNCHES GROUNDBREAKING COMMERCIAL PRINTING FACILITY TO SERVE COLORADO'S LOCAL NEWS ECOSYSTEM

Updated: Apr 8


 

MAR 13 | 2024

 

The National Trust for Local News is proud to announce the launch of a mission-driven commercial printing facility dedicated to strengthening the local news ecosystem across Colorado’s Front Range. This innovative Denver facility marks the debut of the first new newspaper printing press in the country in several years.

The facility will print the National Trust’s 23 Colorado Community Media (CCM) news brands and serve numerous other community publishers, reinforcing the Trust's commitment to supporting strong, sustainable local news.


Many Colorado newspapers have a solid base of subscribers who prefer to consume their news in a printed format, especially in more remote and rural areas where digital access is limited. But the cost of producing a quality printed news product in Colorado has skyrocketed over the past few years.

Small publishers, including our own Colorado Community Media, have been significantly affected by plant closures and price hikes. According to research by our partners at the Colorado Media Project, local publishers have experienced an average 60% increase in printing and distribution costs over the past two years. Other than payroll, printing is often the highest cost that publishers face.

The Trust's new facility will counteract these challenges by offering an affordable but sustainable printing solution. We have developed a printing business model that will simultaneously stabilize our own printing costs, diversify our revenue base, and strengthen the entire Colorado news ecosystem.

We believe strong local news across multiple platforms is key to ensuring the longevity, sustainability, and impact of community newsrooms. Even as we’ve invested heavily in strengthening our print capabilities, Colorado Community Media has made progress toward becoming digitally-forward and growth-focused. In the last year, we overhauled our websites with the help of Newspack and BlueLena, piloted new newsletter strategies in three communities, and launched our first bilingual newsletter.

The press is supported by significant fundraising efforts, with $900,000 in grant funding already secured towards our $1.45 million launch goal. The Trust extends its massive gratitude to our partners: the Bohemian Foundation, Gates Family Foundation, and Colorado Trust, along with unwavering leadership support from the Colorado Media Project.

Our Denver facility also reflects the emerging economies of both scale and knowledge that we are harnessing across the National Trust portfolio. We have found massive savings just by renegotiating purchasing agreements as a unified portfolio. We couldn’t have launched this facility in Colorado without the expertise, insight, and even equipment provided by our printing facilities in Maine and Georgia.

Colorado is where the National Trust was born. It’s where we honed our thesis and it’s where we’re producing the results and evidence that allow us to bring our model to scale.

This is an exciting moment in our journey and we look forward to sharing so much more great news with you in the weeks ahead.



About the National Trust for Local News

The National Trust for Local News (NTLN) owns and operates sustainable news enterprises that are deeply embedded in the communities they serve. The National Trust combines scaled national business operations with deep local partnerships, ensuring that the news outlets we own are intimately connected with the communities they serve. NTLN believes in the power of local news to foster community engagement, enhance understanding, and strengthen the connections between people and the places they live. Community newspapers elevate the quality of life in communities while boosting local economies. The National Trust and its subsidiaries have conserved and operate 64 community news outlets in three states, serving 5.8 million Americans and employing more than 500 people, including more than 250 local journalists.




Visit ntln.org to learn more about our work.


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