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EL PAÍS is selected to participate in Google News Initiative Subscriptions Lab 2.0


The project is led by the Google News Initiative (GNI), FT Strategies – the Financial Times digital consultancy – and the International News Media Association (INMA).

EL PAÍS has been chosen, along with seven other newspaper publishers, to take part in second edition of the Google News Initiative (GNI) Subscriptions Lab for Europe. Promoted by the Google News Initiative (GNI), FT Strategies and the International News Media Association (INMA), this is an ambitious and intensive eight-month programme that seeks to boost the digital subscriptions model, thanks to the FT’s expertise and GNI’s analytic tools.

Over the course of the eight-month programme, the participating publishers will explore every step of the digital subscriptions process, from discovery to conversion to retention. The publishers will have the support of the INMA – and of each other.

Mark Peters, director of EMEA Partnerships Solutions for Google, said: “We want to continue supporting publishers of all sizes in finding a sustainable future, especially around growing their reader revenue. This second round of GNI Subscriptions lab for Europe, in partnerships with FT Strategies and INMA, will enable participating publishers to understand drivers of performance, set ambitious goals, and build capabilities for the future.”

The Lab is designed to strengthen and accelerate growth of the subscription businesses and help publishers deliver customised plans such as optimising the sales funnel and developing new monetisation strategies. According to Tara Lajumoke, managing director of FT Strategies,: “Subscription models have proven to be highly resilient throughout the unique circumstances the news industry has experienced over the past year. The wider organisational transformation that this programme offers will enable eight publishers to unlock the full value of subscriptions and support them in future-proofing their digital business."

Building on the success of last year’s edition, the 2021 programme attracted more than 50 applicants from 22 European countries. The selection criteria to join the Lab comprise senior management support and commitment, digital subscriptions being a top strategic priority, and a willingness to share knowledge and learnings with the rest of the cohort.

“This is an outstanding class of European publishers, at similar points in their subscription journeys, and now the hard work begins,” said Earl J. Wilkinson, executive director and CEO of INMA.

“This program is a magnificent opportunity to strengthen the EL PAÍS digital subscription model, accelerate growth and, through new methodologies and work processes, drive the required transformation of the organization with the focus firmly on the subscriber,” said Alejandro Martínez Peón, CEO of PRISA Noticias, the Group’s news media arm.

The other seven publishers to have been selected are:

  • The Courier (DC Thomson Media), UK.
  • Denik (Vltava Labe Media), Czech Republic.
  • Irish Independent (Independent News & Media), Ireland.
  • Le Journal du Dimanche (Lagardère Media News), France.
  • OÖNachrichten (Wimmer Medien), Austria.
  • Público (Público Comunicação Social), Portugal.
  • Ruhr Nachrichten (Lensing Media), Germany.

About Google News Initiative and Digital Growth Programme

The Subscriptions Lab is a part of the Google News Initiative’s (GNI) Digital Growth Programme, which was created to provide European news publishers with training and other resources to grow their digital business.

The Google News Initiative represents Google’s largest-ever effort to help journalism thrive in the digital age. Through its partnerships, programs and products, the Google News Initiative works with thousands of organisations worldwide to support quality independent journalism, financial sustainability, and development of new technologies that drive innovation. Google allocated US$300 million over three years to energise these collaborations, and to lay the foundation for new products and programs for a diverse set of news publishers, to benefit the entire ecosystem. This includes supporting thought leadership on topics like consumer revenue, advertising, and data that are critical to the future of the news industry.

About FT Strategies

FT Strategies is a boutique digital consultancy within the Financial Times. The firm has deep expertise in reader revenue, customer engagement, and analytics, enabling companies to build profitable digital relationships with their audiences, thrive in the new digital economy, and future-proof their business.

About INMA

The International News Media Association (INMA) is a global community of market-leading news media companies reinventing how they engage audiences and grow revenue in a multi-platform environment. The INMA community consists of 16,000+ members at 850 media companies in 70+ countries and features strategic initiatives dedicated to digital subscriptions, data, and product.


EL PAÍS is the leading Spanish-language news medium in the world. It has more than 145,000 subscribers, 100,000 of whom are exclusively digital. In May 2020, the newspaper launched its digital subscription model.

Founded in 1976, it sets the gold standard for news, independence and innovation. Thanks to a continuous process of transformation, the newspaper is today available in multiple formats and narratives. Around 400 journalists work round the clock to keep the five digital editions of the newspaper updated: Spain, the Americas, Mexico, Brazil and, the edition of the newspaper in Catalan. EL PAÍS has newsrooms in Madrid, Barcelona, Mexico and Sao Paulo and one of the most comprehensive networks of bureaus, correspondents and collaborators worldwide.

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