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Washington Post, Breaking News, Is Also Breaking New Ground

I became a subscriber for the first time, and The Post had just monetized its scoop.

As a private company since 2013, when the deep-pocketed Amazon founder Jeff Bezos bought it for $250 million, The Post doesn’t disclose much financial data. But by all visible measures, including the vital but hard-to-measure buzz factor, the resurrection of The Post, both editorially and financially, in less than four years has been little short of astonishing.

The Post has said that it was profitable last year — and not through cost-cutting. On the contrary, under the newsroom leadership of Martin Baron, the former editor of The Boston Globe memorably portrayed in the film “Spotlight,” The Post has gone on a hiring spree. It has hired hundreds of reporters and editors and has more than tripled its technology staff.

Last month, according to figures from comScore, The Post had 78.7 million unique users and 811 million digital page views, trailing only CNN and The New York Times among news organizations.

“The published numbers speculating about our subscription and ad revenue have so underestimated the reality that it’s comical,” The Post’s chief revenue officer, Jed Hartman, told me this week. “Our digital ad revenue is in the solid nine figures,” that is, in excess of $100 million. This year, he added, “we’ll have our third straight year of double-digit revenue growth.”

Craig Huber, a veteran media and newspaper analyst and founder of Huber Research Partners, said that while he had not seen The Post’s data, the gains reported are striking. “I’m very, very surprised by those numbers,” he said. “No one else is even coming close. If that’s correct, I’m very impressed.”

To be sure, as with other newspapers, The Post’s economic picture is still encumbered by print, where declines in circulation and advertising revenue…

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