Dow Jones said Thursday that it will drop the contract with technology news site AllThingsD after it expires at the end of the year. The publisher of The Wall Street Journal also revealed that it will be launching a similar site of its own.
Walt Mossberg, Kara Swisher not to renew contracts
Walt Mossberg will end his role as The Wall Street Journal’s personal technology columnist after he failed to conclude a deal to continue managing the All Things Digital conference and website. Mossberg is a veteran WSJ journalist and co-founder of the site.
Mossberg, along with journalist Kara Swisher, will not recommence their contract after it ends towards the end of this year. Both of them supervised AllThingsD events, a news outlet owned by Dow Jones & Co. Dow Jones said that it will take further its technology coverage and conference business in their absence.
Mossberg and Swisher launched AllThingsD in 2007 in continuation to The Wall Street Journal‘s D: All Things Digital conference, which made its first appearance four years ago.
AllThingsD conference has attracted guests such as Steve Jobs of Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL), Bill Gates of Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) and Rupert Murdoch of News Corp (NASDAQ:NWSA) (NASDAQ:NWS) for its limited 500 seats event every year.
According to Bloomberg, citing three executives, Mossberg and Swisher have offered other media companies like The New York Times about a joint venture to hold a similar conference under a new brand.
For the latest conference, AllThingsD kept the cost of one ticket for the conference at $5,500 each for a total of $2.75 million. The conference had big name as sponsors like Oracle Corp and Sony Corp who paid $400,000 each, which is more than the revenue generated from selling ticket, according to sources with direct knowledge of the business.
Advertising revenue of AllThingsD totals for around $3 million to $4 million for a year and most of the ads are tied to deals that also run across Dow Jones’s other sites, such as wsj.com. According to a source, AllThingsD can generate only around $1 million per year as a standalone business.
Dow Jones to launch technology news site
Dow Jones will launch a new technology news site and for the same plans to add 20 reviewers, bloggers, visual journalists, editors and reporters, Gerard Baker, editor in chief of Dow Jones and managing editor of The Wall Street Journal.
The company did not comment upon the future of AllThingsD brand. AllThingsD recently launched two events; one concerned with media and the other one with the mobile industry in order to enhance its franchise.