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Corporate History

Corporate
History

 1993

  • WA Business News was established by Harry Kleyn and Vanguard Press as a free fortnightly newspaper for the Perth CBD.

 1996

  • First edition of the Book of Lists

 1999

  • WA Business News Website created

 2000

  • New investors joined including Elton Swarts as Executive Chairman.
  • Moved premises to Beaufort Street, Perth
  • Improved print quality and changed to a weekly publication
  • Mark Pownall joined the editorial team
  • Book of Lists available on CD

 2001

  • Events team established

 2002

  • Began conversion from free publication to subscription based circulation
  • Inaugural 40under40 Awards (Mark Barnaba and Manny Papadoulis share the top prize)
  • First Success & Leadership Series event

 2003

  • Editorial team grew from 3 to 7 journalists.
  • Inaugural Rising Stars Awards (top prize won by advertising agency Gatecrasher)

 2004

  • Final round of free door-to-door circulation

 2005

  • Daily Business Alert emails launched

 2007

  • Morning Digest email launched

 2009

  • WA Business News moves premises to 139 Newcastle Street, Perth.

 2010

  • Harry Kleyn retires from the role of CEO.

 2013

  • WA Business News is rebranded to Business News.
  • Re-launched businessnews.com.au with focus on business data.
  • Launched BNIQ - WA Business Intelligence (digital Book of Lists).
  • Launched metered paywall with registered users having access to 8 articles per month.

 2014

  • Full gloss format for newspaper
  • New mobile-friendly design for Daily Business Alert
  • Morning Digest and Afternoon Wrap (e-newsletters) exceed 36,000 subscribers
  • Web traffic after installation of paywall exceeds traffic before paywall (Unique Visitors)
    • Pre paywall: 56,000 UV
    • Post paywall: 65,000 UV

 2015

  • Charlie Gunningham becomes CEO
  • Launch of the Weekender email and subscriber centre
  • Launch of mobile app - iOS & Android

 2016

  • Business News returns to fortnightly format
  • Responsive website redesign

WA Business News came to life as a fortnightly newspaper in 1993, offering Western Australia's business people their first taste of an independently owned news format exclusively about them and for them. We were rebranded to Business News in April 2013.

Today, Business News has evolved to become Western Australia's leading general business news and information service.

Established by Harry Kleyn, the founding partner of the Community Newspaper Group, and his business partners Vanguard Press, Business News found a healthy niche as a free circulation newspaper almost exclusively circulated in the Perth CBD.

In 2000, Harry sought new investors who joined the team and were represented on the operational side of the business by Executive Director, Elton Swarts, who now holds the position of Executive Chairman.

This event was a catalyst to major change at the newspaper.  Within months the company relocated to premises in Beaufort Street, formed a team that began in-house digital design and layout of the newspaper and launched in a weekly format.

There were also some significant changes made to the look of the paper. Printing was transferred to Colourpress, with a resultant improvement in the quality of newsprint from 45 GSM to 52 GSM, providing a cleaner, smoother, whiter finish.  Combined with the benefits of the electronic production process, these changes resulted in a striking improvement in colour reproduction.

The next stage of development was to address the newspaper's editorial department, which was expanded in line with the change to a weekly format and the higher demands for quality.

Towards the end of 2000, Finance Journalist, Mark Pownall joined the team with a decade-long background in daily business in Western Australia and weekly commercial press in the UK.

Business News recognised its ongoing success relied on editorial quality and within two years the Editorial Department grew from three Journalists to seven, covering almost every aspect of industry in WA and offering a news focus unmatched by any other media.

In 2003, the investment in resources for both the editorial and design departments bore fruit with the paper winning a major award by beating a large international field to secure a bronze prize at the Alliance of Area Business Publication's Annual Editorial Excellence Awards. The Alliance represents 65 business-focused publications world-wide and the award recognised Business News' high standards against long standing competition. In presenting the Award the judging panel stated that Business News was a publication "with attitude, bold in content and design and therefore, well-suited for the region it serves". Since the first award, Business News has successfully won several other editorial awards: 2005 Best Small Tabloid, Bronze and Best Scoop, Bronze; 2007 Best Special Section Design; 2009 Best Front Page; and 2015 Best Daily Email. This focus on quality fostered another offering to readers beyond the written word – events.

The Business News Events Department , which commenced in 2001, has grown into a significant part of the company. Signature events such as the 40under40 Awards search for young business talent. Business News events assist the Editorial Department to seek out locally based success stories celebrating business achievements in Western Australia. The Success and Leadership series has allowed Perth audiences access to some of WA's most prominent business leaders. In 2003, the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade teamed up with Business News to launch the unique Meet the Ambassadors series connecting Australian ambassadors with WA's international traders.

Mindful that the importance of a subscription-based circulation model in assuring delivery direct to the office desk, Business News began converting its free circulation list to paid subscription in 2002. A high value subscription package was crafted to include the highly sought after Book of Lists, which was first published in 1996.

The conversion to paid circulation continues to track ahead of estimates based on the US business model with the conclusion in 2004 of the last round of free, door-to-door circulation. The value of a paid versus free paper has made Business News an even more attractive vehicle in which to advertise.

In 2014, The Circulation Verification Council was commissioned to undertake the fifth readership audit of Business News. Responses to the extensive questionnaire were outstanding.

The survey reported:

  • weekly readership of 28,280
  • 83% of readers are top management (owner, partner, CEO, president, CFO, CIO, COO, other executive, VP, director/manager)
  • 83% Influence purchasing decisions
  • 79% of readers invest 24 minutes or longer reading the print publication of Business News
  • 95% of readers find Business News to be a useful source of information (Nielsen Company Reader Survey 2008)

From January 2016, the indepth printed edition will be distributed fortnightly, with strong emphasis placed on the website news and BNiQ data offering.

The goal for Business News today and its team in going forward is simple - our aim is to deliver a high-quality news and information service that provides the insights, connection and opportunities to doing business in the nation's leading economy.