Ara – now in Catalan

april 12, 2011

By the first glimpse, you wouldn’t believe there was an newsdesk hiding behind the windows. But past the reception, and up the stairs, a world filled with mac computers and eager young journalists opens up – Welcome to Ara.
The editor in chief, Carles Capdevila, has been working on the dream of launching a catalan magazine for almost two years. What started as a gruoup of five people in June, has developed into a staff consisting of 90 journalists. They all work together to each day produce a new magazine for the stalls and for the catalan people of Spain.

Since Ara was launched in November 2010, the readers have increased to almost one million. But it has more to it than just a paper magazine; they also have a webpage consisting of both tv-casts and the magazine itself.
– This way, our readers can apply for the magazine through their iPod’s and pad’s. Ara is built on a new way to think, Capdevila says.

Today, the magazine has approximatly 6000 subscribers. Each day, the paper magazine is read by 20 000 people. While on the internet, a study in March showed that the online readers reach a number of 750 000 people.
The news director, Guillem Carbonell, explains that this big difference depends on that Ara attracts a new group of readers – the new generation.
– Maybe they haven’t been satisfied with the news range that for example magazines as La Puis has to offer. And it works for our advantage, that there aren’t many magazines written in Catalan, he says.

Since Ara is a modern magazine, Carles Capdevila has hired alot of young journalists who can keep up with one of today’s most powerful media; social networks. The avarage age at the newsdesk is around 30.
– Though in contrast to alot of other magazines, we dont narrow the young journalists down to the media section. They are included in the whole magazine, Capdevila ensures.

The magazine is financed like almost all others; mainly by advertisers. They wanna show their commercial for the young readers that Ara attracts. And even though their success so far, they count on having some economical loss the first years. Hopefully, this will turn in the forthcoming years.
Carles Capdevila claims that the most exciting part has been to build something up from scratch, and today have a working team consisting of 90 journalists – and it has happened in about five months.
– My family isn’t too pleased though, I tend to spend more time with my iPhone than them, he laughs.

Helga Haavisto

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