Justin Smith said he would leave Bloomberg Media as CEO four months ago to get started stoplight, an online publication aimed at college-educated English-speaking readers around the world. He partnered with Ben Smith, a former media columnist for the New York Times, who will serve as chief editor of Semafor. Micklethwait and Havens said Semafor, which is due to begin publishing this year, had no bearing on the timing of Bloomberg’s global strategy.
“We’re not necessarily looking at the pages on this, but we wish them the best, of course,” said Mr. Havens.
Mr. Micklethwait and Mr. Havens, who became CEO after Justin Smith’s resignation, jointly launched the initiative as part of a broader strategy at Bloomberg LP’s founding billionaire Michael R. Bloomberg in December. He responded enthusiastically, Mr. Havens said.
Both executives declined to say how much the company was investing in the effort, but Mr. Micklethwait said Mr. Havens was spending “large sums of money” on journalists, engineering and marketing for Bloomberg UK. Bloomberg Media’s revenue in 2021 was up 50% from the previous year and increased by a further 21% in the first quarter of 2022, Havens said.
Bloomberg Media has nearly 400,000 digital subscribers, four years after installing a paywall on its websites. More than 40 percent of subscribers are located outside the United States, with Britain the second largest market, Havens said.
“At a time when the UK is at risk of following the US on a media path that is hyperpartisan and highly sensationalized – and suffer the kind of severe consequences that we have seen here in America,” Bloomberg said in a statement. notes, “We are expanding our commitment to high-quality, fact-based journalism focusing primarily on business and business news.”