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Primary website:
startribune.com
Primary Twitter:
@startribune

The Star Tribune is a daily newspaper in Minnesota’s Twin Cities.

The Star Tribune ranked in 2012 as the nation’s 17th-largest newspaper with a combined print and digital circulation of 300,000, and, according to analysis of  Compete.com data, the 18th-most-popular newspaper website.

The Star Tribune’s holding company is Star Tribune Media Co., which is owned predominantly by the creditors of the paper’s former owner, Avista Capital Partners. The paper had long been owned by the Cowles family, but it was sold in 1998 to McClatchy and then to Avista in 2006. In 2014, local billionaire Glen Taylor signed a letter of intent to buy the paper and become its sole owner.

Though the Star Tribune was profitable, in January 2009 its $480 million debt forced bankruptcy. The newspaper emerged from bankruptcy in September 2009 with $100 million in debt. It reported in 2014 that it had been “solidly profitable” every year since its bankruptcy.

The Star Tribune charged for online Minnesota Vikings content in the early 2000s and began again in 2009, and in 2011 began charging for access to its website using a metered model. In mid-2012, it reported 18,000 paying digital subscribers, in addition to its daily print subscribers; earlier that year, it said that 14,000 digital subscribers had accounted for about $1.4 million in annual revenue. In 2014, the Star Tribune announced a partnership with The Washington Post that gave Star Tribune subscribers free access to the Post’s website and apps.

In 2008, the Star Tribune and other newspapers gave The Associated Press two-year notice in 2008 that they would cancel their contracts with the news cooperative. The newspaper backed off that threat after the AP restructured its rates.

The Star Tribune and its smaller rival, the St. Paul Pioneer Press, are the frequent subjects of merger rumors. The Star Tribune announced it would begin printing the Pioneer Press in 2014.

Recent Nieman Lab coverage:
April 10, 2014 / Ken Doctor
The newsonomics of 50/50 and the unchaining of the U.S. press — Asked last week whether he was buying the Star Tribune for business or altruistic reasons, Glen Taylor said a lot in a two-word answer: “50/50.” News observers have parsed and poked at every recent big buy ov...
March 28, 2014 / Joshua Benton
It looks like another sports team owner is about to buy another newspaper — That’s the report from John Vomhof Jr. of the Minneapolis/St. Paul Business Journal: Taylor Corp. and Minnesota Timberwolves owner Glen Taylor is close to a deal to buy the Star Tribune, according to a local report...
March 18, 2014 / Joseph Lichterman
The Washington Post goes national by offering free digital access to readers of local newspapers — In 1980, The New York Times launched a daily national edition that, despite a significant upfront investment, turned into a position of strength; today, more than half of the Times’ print subscribers are outside Ne...
July 18, 2013 / Ken Doctor
The newsonomics of 2013’s second half, from ad depression to day dropping to real estate as destiny — The news world already has produced enough news for a whole year in the first half of 2013. What lies ahead for the second half of the year? We’ve got all kinds of clear trend lines, large and small, and can pick o...
July 3, 2013 / Joshua Benton
In Minneapolis, a newspaper goes for serial fiction and an ebook — At Poynter, Anna Li looks at the effort: Lynn Liedman wakes up every morning looking for the Minneapolis Star Tribune. She’s been a loyal subscriber for years, but it wasn’t until this summer that she really got hook...

Recently around the web, from Mediagazer:

Primary author: Mark Coddington. Main text last updated: April 3, 2014.
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