Tag Archives: TheStreet.com

JiM Cramer 2

TheStreet.com investor complains about Jim Cramer


Josh Kosman of The New York Post writes that an investor in The-Street.com claims the company’s co-founder and biggest name — TV stockpicker Jim Cramer — is the equivalent of an overpaid baseball slugger who has failed to deliver for shareholders.

Kosman writes, “Private-equity firm Spear Point argued in its latest letter to the company’s board that Cramer’s $1 million-plus salary should be tied to performance when his three-year contract comes up for renewal at the end of the year.

“‘If Mr. Cramer were a player on the New York Yankees, his talent and fame would be marginally interesting,’ according to the letter obtained by The Post. ‘To play in the major leagues you must contribute to your team’s success.

“‘Mr. Cramer has failed over the years to do that for his team, TheStreet, and its Steinbrenners, the shareholders.’

“According to Spear Point, Cramer has received more than $13 million in cash compensation and millions more in stock and other benefits from 1999 until 2012, including a personal driver, while ‘common shareholders have watched almost $400 million in market value evaporate.’”

Read more here.

Business Models

Business models and business journalism


The second panel discussion at Talking Biz News’ conference at the CUNY Graduate School of Journalism in New York invited those on the business end of journalism to talk about the model for making money and what the future may bring.

The discussion touched on a variety of topics including pay walls for web sites, sponsored content, the decline of advertising dollars and how organizations may choose to brand their content.

Bill Grueskin, dean of academic affairs at the Columbia University School of Journalism and former managing editor at WSJ.com, mentioned that some pay walls have had more success than others. Models, like that of the New York Times, were a certain amount of content is free, then you have to pay seems to be working better. Grueskin mentioned the Dallas Morning News’ recent decision to take down its pay wall completely after losing customers.

Most panelists agreed that people would pay for quality, original content and that’s being demonstrated at publications of all sizes. At American City Business Journals, group publisher and executive vice president Rob Fisher said it was exploring ways to get those who subscribe to its print publications, those who pay for emailed content and people who attend events to pay a bit more or to purchase additional products.

Much of his revenue model, which is driven by local journalism, comes from non-journalism sources such as events as well as people paying for premium access or other items. They charge for reprints, links, the use of PDFs and other low cost, higher margin items.

Another force that publishers will have to content with is the rise in competition from journalism nonprofits, foundations, and privately funded organizations, said Steve Shepard, founding dean of the CUNY Graduate School of Journalism and former editor of BusinessWeek.

“What’s heartening to me is the rise of parallel universe in biz journalism,” he said. He mentioned that CUNY would begin a new program in the fall funding journalists who want to do long-form, investigative pieces. They would differ from other nonprofits in that they wouldn’t have their own staff, but seek out reporters with good ideas who needed funding to get them done.

Another disruptive change in the journalism business model is that people are looking for sites to find, organize and aggregate the best content for them, said Ranjan Roy, cofounder of Informerly.com, which is focused on delivering e-commerce news to global professionals. He also mentioned the rise of sponsored content, arguing that readers are accepting of content that doesn’t interrupt their reading.

“The opportunity in sponsored content is about generating an experience that doesn’t interrupt your reader and is as good as your original stories,” Roy said. He mentioned the advent of Facebook and Twitter sponsored posts, which are delivered in the same manner as regular social media.

Elisabeth DeMarse, chief executive officer of TheStreet.com, said that video was another area of opportunity for all sites, including sponsored content. She cited an example of a company sponsoring a video interview with one of their experts as a good example of this type of content. DeMarse, along with many others, are investing in video technology in the newsroom in order to more quickly produce this content on breaking news story.

Shepard urged organizations to have guidelines around sponsored content including how to label it clearly and what to call it. He was dismayed by some outlets calling this content sponsored journalism and said the industry needed to create professional guidelines.

Much of the future of journalism will depend on those on the business side making money. Panelists agreed the model differed for various publications, but that it would involve some type of non-advertising revenue.


The rebuilding of TheStreet.com


Arti Patel of Folio writes Tuesday about how CEO Elisabeth DeMarse has overhauled TheStreet.com’s operations.

Patel writes, “DeMarse offered candid comments about downsizing her editorial staff and the expansion of TheStreet’s contributor content model.

“‘When I came in, we went from 70 on staff to 15 and I filled in with the contributor content model,’ she said. ‘We pulled $2 million from the newsroom [costs].’

“The contributor content model allows various industry voices to publish their insights directly on the company’s site, which are then widely distributed across all TheStreet’s media channels. Currently, TheStreet retains 500 content contributors, according to DeMarse, but there is a ‘personal touch’ from the editors that helps facilitate the exchanges.

“‘It’s not a tsunami of content,’ she said. ‘[But] it’s the way of the future.’

“Adjusting her company’s advertising perspective, implementing cost-cutting measures and managing content and talent are the ways DeMarse was able to facilitate TheStreet’s financial turnaround since joining the company over a year ago. In the second quarter of 2013, TheStreet generated $13.5 million, an 8 percent year-over-year increase.”

Read more here.

NBR set

TheStreet.com to sponsor “Nightly Business Report”


TheStreet.com announced Wednesday that it will sponsor “Nightly Business Report” for the fourth quarter, marking the company’s second sponsorship of the program this year.

The sponsorship will span 65 episodes from Oct. 1 through Dec. 31, each featuring two 15-second funding credits at the beginning and end of the show.

“TheStreet and ‘Nightly Business Report’ have a natural synergy and a shared goal of empowering people with actionable news and information when it comes to their money and investments,” said Elisabeth DeMarse, CEO and chairman of TheStreet, in a prepared statement. “We’re excited to once again support the longest-running business television program in the country and extend TheStreet’s reach to their audience.”

Initially, TheStreet’s sponsorship campaign will highlight Dividend Stock Advisor, one of its subscription services focused on dividend stocks. TheStreet’s funding credit was produced by Houpla Inc. which also designed and implemented TheStreet’s studio and production facilities.

“Nightly Business Report,” co-anchored by Tyler Mathisen and Susie Gharib, features in-depth coverage and analysis of the biggest financial news stories of the day and access to some of the world’s top business leaders and policy makers.


Deal Pipeline 2

The Deal launches new iPhone app


The Deal, which was acquired a year ago by TheStreet.com, announced Wednesday the launch of a new version of its iPad application and a new iPhone app.

The apps provide news articles and video reporting from The Deal’s newsroom in addition to a new feature for the iPad app that offers information about the initial public offering market powered by NYSE Euronext. Both apps are available to licensees of The Deal’s transaction information service, The Deal Pipeline.

“We’re taking The Deal Pipeline’s user experience to the next level by offering mobile access to our top reporting in a variety of ways. Those who frequent The Deal can now keep abreast of the latest news as it happens, with periodical reports or intraday news by sector,” said Michael Crosby, chief operating officer for The Deal, in a statement. “Our users are interested in the ongoing news of mergers and acquisitions.”

The Deal Pipeline for iPad and iPhone also feature a breaking news tool providing early alerts on potential deals and a preview of events driving the reporting in The Deal’s newsroom, a twice-daily feature with accompanying slideshow on who’s moving up and who’s moving out across the deal economy, and nine pages dedicated to coverage in consumer and retail, energy, health care, industrials, private equity, real estate, regulation, restructuring and telecommunications media and technology.


TheStreet.com new logo

TheStreet.com readers are the rich and affluent


Mike Arnold of Seeking Alpha writes Monday about TheStreet.com and how it seems to have found a growth model.

Arnold writes, “TheStreet also points out that, comScore, an independent Web measurement company, ranked it first among financial media websites for delivering the difficult-to-reach mass affluent demographic. In particular, TheStreet ranked:

  • #1 in Household Income over $100,000;
  • #2 in Portfolio Value over $1 million;
  • #1 in Trading Activity;
  • #1 in Checking Stock Quotes Multiple Times Each Day; and
  • #1 in Works in Finance

“As one can see, TheStreet‘s readers possess material wealth. That is not a bad customer to be selling services too, especially ones where growing that wealth is the ultimate goal. They are usually less price sensitive, and willing to pay for content that will provide actionable ideas. This is similar to Seeking Alpha’s goal, actionable and profitable ideas.

“Subscription revenues at TheStreet are growing at a fast clip. For the 6 months ended June 30, 2013, subscription revenues were $21 million, up from $17.8 million, an increase of 18% year/year. Media revenue was down; I’m less concerned with that. In fact, subscription revenues make up 80% of TheStreet‘s revenue, up from 70% in the year ago quarter (although much of that is inorganic through acquisitions). I am certainly impressed with that. The holy grail of publishing is a subscription model with a growing subscriber base, allowing for recurring revenue for consistent and predictable cash flow, meanwhile spreading fixed costs among a wider audience, thereby allowing earnings leverage to shine bright.”

Read more here.

The Deal and TheStreet2

TheStreet.com and The Deal celebrate one year together


TheStreet.com staff celebrated Thursday its one-year anniversary of its acquisition of The Deal, a mergers and acquisitions news operation, with cupcakes in the newsroom.

Pictured are chief executive officer Elisabeth DeMarse with head of video Ruben Ramirez.

The acquisition cost TheStreet $5.8 million, and it shut The Deal’s print magazine operations, resulting in some layoffs. Select content from The Deal appears on TheStreet’s website, and The Deal Pipeline continues to produce daily content.

Ramirez and DeMarse2

TheStreet.com new logo

TheStreet.com beefs up its video team


TheStreet.com announced Wednesday some new additions and appointments to the video team, which is led by Ruben Ramirez.

Mark Sugarman has joined as video creative director, while Sophie Bearman and Jeremy Jennings have joined as associate producers. Daniel Lebo has been appointed to a new role as video optimization manager. The team is responsible for producing video across the company’s brands, including TheStreet, MainStreet and The Deal.

“As TheStreetTV ramps up video production there’s a big focus on creating quality content that’s engaging to viewers no matter where they choose to watch, be it mobile, tablets or desktops. Video consumption is shifting at warp speed and we want to be at the forefront of delivering compelling content that people can engage with,” said Ramirez in a statement. “Our new team brings field experience as well as fresh insight to our ever-growing video program that will allow us to offer this to our audience.”

Sugarman was recently the lead graphic designer for MSNBC’s Ed Show. He has also worked at Fox Business Network. Prior to that, he was the lead motion graphics artist at Bloomberg TV where he spearheaded the Bloomberg on Demand program. Mark began his career in broadcast media at CNN and CNNfn primetime. He was the lead artist for both Lou Dobbs and the Paula Zahn show. Sugarman received his BS in business administration at Boston University and his MFA in graphic design and interactive media at the Pratt Institute.

Lebo was most recently a video producer at TheStreet. In his new role, Lebo will be responsible for optimizing video search on various content distribution platforms. He joined The Street in 2011 after graduating from Hofstra University with a BA in film production.

Bearman is a 2013 Magna Cum Laude graduate of Harvard University with a degree in video production. Berman chaired Harvard’s newspaper’s highly popular blog and oversaw a team of writers, videographers and photographers.

Jennings has joined The Street as an associate producer. Jennings is a 2013 graduate of Radford University. Jennings graduated with a degree in communications. During Jenning’s time at Radford he worked in the School of Communication in their campus broadcast studio.

Herb Greenberg CNBC

Why leave CNBC for TheStreet.com?


Herb Greenberg writes about his decision to leave business news network CNBC and return to financial news site TheStreet.com.

Greenberg writes, “The decision to leave CNBC was a tough one — as emotionally difficult as when I decided to leave the my 10-year gig as a daily business columnist at The San Francisco Chronicle for TheStreet in 1998, where I remained for six years. During that time I was a frequent CNBC guest and contributor before joining full-time a little more than three years ago.

“In the latest episode of CNBC Unscripted, how many places can a person live in a lifetime? Herb Greenberg’s travel resume may surprise you.

“Why leave and why now? No surprise to those who know me—it’s about Southern California. Many people thought my wife and I were crazy (no — nuts!) to leave San Diego, where we lived for 10 years, for the East Coast. Turns out they were right. This, our third time doing the East Coast stint, was strike three.

“Truth be told—taxes, earthquakes and fires notwithstanding — we simply missed San Diego. It had become home, and with my contract about to expire (and CNBC steadfastly refusing to move its HQ there to accommodate me) we decided to go back.

“Staying at CNBC full-time meant staying at HQ in New Jersey. My seat is in the middle of the newsroom and the in-house, in-studio interaction is an intangible that doesn’t work the same remotely, let alone from 3,000 miles away.”

Read more here.

Herb Greenberg

Greenberg rejoining TheStreet.com


TheStreet.com announced Thursday that business journalist Herb Greenberg has rejoined the company.

Greenberg, a senior stocks commentator on CNBC, will serve as editor of Herb Greenberg’s Reality Check, a subscription newsletter designed to help investors better manage risk; write a daily blog for TheStreet’s main free site and contribute to Real Money’s “Columnist Conversation.” He also will remain a regular CNBC contributor.

“We’re thrilled Herb Greenberg is returning to TheStreet. No one is more passionate and does more work around companies and industries than Herb does. He sparks serious conversation to help investors separate speculation from reality by shining a spotlight on risks,” said Elisabeth DeMarse, CEO and chairman of TheStreet, in a statement. “Our goal is to educate investors, and help investors make money.  But avoiding losing money is just as important as making it — and nobody does it better than Herb.”

Greenberg was senior columnist for TheStreet from 1998 until 2006, before joining MarketWatch, during which time he also wrote a weekly column for The Wall Street Journal. For many years he wrote a monthly column for Fortune magazine. Earlier in his career, he was a daily business columnist for the San Francisco Chronicle and a business reporter for the Chicago Tribune

“I’m excited to be returning to my online journalism roots,” Greenberg said. “A lot has changed over the years, but one thing hasn’t: TheStreet stands out as an independent, edgy voice. It remains a perfect place to give investors a dose of reality — and remind them of the risk many choose to ignore.”

Greenberg will be based in San Diego.

On his Facebook page, Greenberg wrote, “Truth be told — taxes, earthquakes and fires notwithstanding — we simply missed San Diego. It had become home, and with my contract about to expire, we decided to go back.”