English-language Jewish weekly may go daily p.62

By: Mark Fitzgerald FORWARD ? THE NEW York City English-language Jewish weekly with roots in the legendary Yiddish Daily Forward (Forverts) ? may go daily itself in time to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the Yiddish Forward on April 22, 1997.
The Forward Association announced it has sold a minority stake to an investor group led by Forward editor Seth Lipsky in an arrangement that is intended to take the newspaper daily. Forward Association owns both the five-year-old English-language Forward and Forverts, the Yiddish-language paper now published weekly.
Over the next three years Lipsky and fellow investor Michael H. Steinhardt, a New York City financier and philanthropist, will gradually increase their stake until they own 50% of the English-language Forward.
In a front-page story in the Forward May 5, the Lipsky-Steinhardt group indicated the group is prepared to invest "several million dollars over several years."
With the investment, a new company, Forward Newspaper L.L.C., now owns the English-language Forward.
Lipsky, a former Wall Street Journal editorial board member, suggested in the announcement that he has been aiming to take the Forward daily since he first put together a group to bring out an English version of Forverts.
"Mr. Lipsky has argued . . . that the dynamics of the newspaper industry are changing so as to make it possible to build a small daily newspaper with a clearly defined, sophisticated audience," the newspaper said.
Lipsky said he had approached Steinhardt as long ago as 1993, and the two even had a short-lived association at the time.
The Forward, which circulates nationally, has an estimated paid circulation of 13,000 and free distribution of about 7,000, according to 1995 Editor & Publisher International Year Book.
The weekly newspaper said it has had operating losses annually since its beginning.
In an editorial, Forward said there is a bright future for its secular Jewish bent.
"The crisis of Jewish continuity, as it's sometimes called, is said to be acute, and there are many who assert that the only solution is a return to religious orthodoxy. Here the Forward we are convinced of something different, which is that the values that have animated this newspaper from the beginning have a relevance that is not receding but growing . . . .
"Our conception of Jewish culture has always been broad and liberal, and it will remain so," the newspaper wrote.


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