To buy digital individual journalistic content on the Internet is the business idea of Blendle. On Thursday, the innovative approach was recognised in Hamburg, with its founder Marten Blankesteijn being honoured with the scoop award at scoop camp 2015 in Hamburg. With this award, the initiative nextMedia.Hamburg and the German news agency dpa have been honouring for the second time a media entrepreneur who has combined a journalistic business models with the possibilities of digital technologies in a unique and outstanding way. In 2014, the first scoop award has been granted to the co-founder of storify, Burt Herman.
At Hamburg’s Kehrwieder Theater at world heritage Speicherstadt district, more than 250 experts, decision-makers and innovators of the digital media and industry discussed the trends and developments at the interface between editing, programming and product development. Workshops, lectures and discussions with experts complemented the agenda. Focal topics of the digital media meeting were “data journalism”, “social media” and “new storytelling”.
Complementiing Publishers’ Paywalls
The award was handed to Blankesteijn by Johannes Vogel, managing director of the Süddeutsche Zeitung Digital Media GmbH. In his speech, Vogel emphasised that the Dutch startup has been delivering many enjoyable stories to readers. “Blendle enrich the media landscape and its business models. The user-friendly listing of the startup perfectly complements the different paywalls offered by publishers”, thus Vogel.
Often called the iTunes for journalism, Blendle is particularly successful with target groups aged 35 and younger. Founded by Blankesteijn and Alexander Klöpping in 2013 in the Netherlands, 380,000 people and more than 80 publications have been using the he pay-per article experiment after two years of presence. In September 2014, Blendle successfully entered the German market.
“Journalism needs entrepreneurial minds such as Marten Blankesteijn. They push the industry ahead. Blendle opened another promising way to ensure the viability of quality content in the digital age”, said Meinolf Ellers, managing director of dpa-infocom GmbH and co-initiator of the scoop camp.
New Ideas Welcome
Marten Blankesteijn was visibly proud of his prize. “To be recognised with a distinction so shortly after our launch in Germany – and just two years after our founding – makes me very proud. The fact that leading media such as Süddeutsche Zeitung, Neon or Gala are using our platform clearly shows that the German media industry is ready for new ideas”, Blankesteijn said at the award ceremony. Like last year’s winner Burt Herman, also Blankesteijn will be taking home a unique piece of art as trophy: “The Storyteller”, designed by the Hamburg artist group Styrocuts.
Media city Hamburg
Hamburg’s is a creative city and internationally important centre of media and information technology. Together, both sectors employ more than 100,000 people in more than 23,000 companies such as Der Spiegel, Die Zeit, Stern, Axel Springer Verlag, the Bauer Media Group, Gruner + Jahr, Google, Facebook, and Xing.