Bad News for Regional Papers in Israel

The first attempt to establish a chain of regional newspapers in Israel has collapsed after seven months of mounting losses estimated in the hundreds of thousands of dollars.

The publishers, Eitan Communications, announced Friday that the 14 weekly newspapers, published under the collective title “Rehov Rashi” (Main Street), have been closed and some 150 employes–journalists, graphic artists, typesetters and clerical staff were dismissed.

The venture begun last April, failed for lack of advertising. David Golan, director general of the Danot Investment Group, one of the backers of the enterprise, declined to give details. Haaretz reported that the losses were in six figures. Other investors were the Bank Leumi and Delta Galil. The chain failed when the promoters were unable to raise additional capital or sell the papers to other parties.

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