'Wall Street Journal' to Add Color for Advertisers

Move Comes as Ad Revenue Declines in September

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NEW YORK (AdAge.com) -- September was a cold month for The Wall Street Journal, where ad revenue fell 5.9% and classified lineage sank 13.1%, the first decline in classified ad volume since January 2005. But the third quarter as a whole was up slightly for the paper, and perhaps most importantly in the long term, The Journal said today it was starting a two-year project to add color capacity to the paper -- all the better to serve advertisers.
The number of color pages available to advertisers will increase by 17%, to 168 pages a week.
The number of color pages available to advertisers will increase by 17%, to 168 pages a week.

$30 million project
"We project rapid growth in color demand in excess of current Journal capabilities," said L. Gordon Crovitz, exec VP, Dow Jones & Co., and publisher, The Wall Street Journal. The $30 million project will boost the color pages available to advertisers by 17% to 168 pages a week.

Newspapers' financial results are of great interest not just to investors these days, but to employees and others because growth -- that hallowed grail on Wall Street -- is a constant need at most. While Dow Jones has an ownership structure that prevents it from easily going the way of Knight Ridder, which was forced by dissident shareholders to sell itself in pieces last year, the whole newspaper business remains under sharper watch than many other media sectors.

Online revenue up 12.4%
For the third quarter, ad revenue at The Journal rose 0.3% on a lineage increase of 1.1%. Online revenue for Dow Jones grew 12.4% in the quarter. The paper pinned its September declines on weakness in the technology services, personal computer and classified real estate advertising.

The Journal expects its ad revenue to grow in the low-to-mid-single digits in the fourth quarter.
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