Reportedly New Zealand’s most visited news media website, Stuff has been sold to Sinead Boucher, chief executive officer, for an amazing NZ$1.
Hailed as an innovator in the media space, Boucher plans to implement a staff ownership model as well as a charter for editorial independence. She heralds the change in ownership as a new start and an opportunity to break new ground.
The media house was previously a subsidiary of Australian company Nine Entertainment. Boucher’s acquisition has not come as a huge industry surprise as there have long been speculation that a takeover was looming.
“It’s no silver bullet for all the issues that media are navigating through, lay on top of that all the Covid issues that we’re all going to be navigating through,” Boucher said in an interview with the Guardian.
“But it does give us a sense of being more in control of our own futures and that the sacrifices that people have personally made, such as salary sacrifice, are for something that we will have more control over.
“Everyone’s glad to draw a line under the uncertainty that’s been around for Stuff for a long time now,” Boucher said.
Speaking in her plans for a staff ownership model, Boucher says the details have not yet been decided, but should take shape over the coming weeks.
“I wanted an ownership structure that would give staff a direct stake in the ownership, but also leave us the ability to potentially bring in new partners or investors in future should we need it,” she said.
“Having a stake in our future I think will be really energising for all of us, to direct our own destiny and not a company that’s owned by an international parent who we’re never going to be front and centre of their strategy and their concerns.”