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New York Times to beef up online edition

The New York Times Co. inks a deal with NewsStand to publish an online version of its flagship newspaper that preserves the look and layout of the print edition.

    The New York Times Co. said Tuesday it has inked a deal with NewsStand to publish an online version of its flagship newspaper that preserves the look and layout of the print edition, including all advertisements.

    The new online version of the paper will be available around mid-2001 under a five-year deal that will supplement rather than replace The New York Times' Web site, according to the company.

    The Times also said it has taken a minority equity stake in Austin, Texas-based NewsStand, which has developed software applications that enable the publishing industry to distribute digital media in a traditional, print-style format via the Web.

    The announcement is the latest effort by the Times to expand its online readership despite recent layoffs in its Internet business. In January, the company laid off 17 percent, or 69 positions, at New York Times Digital.

    "We know that there is great demand for our newspaper that we cannot fulfill because of the printing and distribution issues involved in reaching the four corners of the globe," said Scott Heekin-Canedy, senior vice president for circulation at The New York Times. "The NewsStand suite of products enables us to sell and distribute the newspaper anywhere in the world."

    Heekin-Canedy said that while the subscription rate has not yet been determined, the fees will be comparable to the print versions.

    The New York Times Co. publishes The New York Times, The Boston Globe and 15 other newspapers.

    NewsStand said readers will be able to subscribe to the newspaper at either the Times' Web site or at NewsStand.com.

    "It's a cost-effective mechanism for the New York Times Co. to look into this space," said Tracey Jones, president of NewsStand. "We provide them with the tools and software and backend processing ability...to distribute their content worldwide."