Reuters Names a New Editor in Chief

Reuters has appointed Alessandra Galloni, one of the news agency’s highest-ranking editors, as the new editor-in-chief, the company announced on Monday.

Ms. Galloni, 47, will be the first woman to head the Reuters newsroom in its 170-year history. As global editor-in-chief, she has held a top position at one of the world’s largest news organizations with 2,500 journalists in 200 locations since 2015.

Ms. Galloni, a Roman native who worked in the company’s London office, will succeed Stephen J. Adler, who headed Reuters for a decade before announcing his resignation this year. The company won seven Pulitzer Awards on its watch, including the Breaking News Photography Award in 2019 and 2020. Ms. Galloni will stay in London after starting her new role next Monday.

“For 170 years, Reuters has set the standard for independent, trustworthy and global reporting,” she said in a statement. “It is an honor to lead a world class newsroom full of talented, dedicated and inspiring journalists.”

Early in her career, Ms. Galloni worked for Reuters’ Italian-language news service. She was a reporter and editor for the Wall Street Journal for 13 years before returning to Reuters in 2013 as editor for the Southern Europe office.

Reuters President Michael Friedenberg said in a statement that Ms. Galloni “has a compelling vision for the future of the news.”

“She was the standout candidate in a large, global search and competitive recruiting process that saw many impressive internal and external candidates participate,” he said.

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April 12, 2021, 10:12 p.m. ET

Executives at parent company Thomson Reuters have been looking for ways to cut costs and increase revenue at the news agency. This means that Ms. Galloni must be both an entrepreneur and the newsroom manager.

Reuters’ profit is small for the size of its business. Last year the company posted pre-tax profits of $ 73 million on sales of $ 628 million.

Reuters is owned by Thomson Reuters and is largely funded by another company: the London Stock Exchange Group. Reuters will receive at least $ 325 million a year from the company that operates the UK stock exchange for the next 28 years, and nearly 60 percent of the newsroom’s cost was funded through the seller’s agreement last year.

The unique agreement resulted from a number of complex acquisitions. In October 2018, Thomson Reuters sold most of its $ 20 billion data business, known as Refinitiv, to investment giant Blackstone Group. Reuters is integrated with Refinitiv, a data product popular with Wall Street traders and business people. It competes with Bloomberg LP

But long-standing statutes that govern Reuters make it almost impossible to take over the newsroom. A so-called poison pill rule prevents a company from owning more than 15 percent of the news business. Another provision gives the directors of the trust that rules Reuters the power to veto or advocate a takeover.

Partly because of this complication, Thomson Reuters brokered an agreement in which Blackstone agreed to pay Reuters at least $ 325 million a year for 30 years, bringing the newsroom nearly $ 10 billion in endowment.

In January, Blackstone sold Refinitiv in an all-stock transaction to the London Stock Exchange Group.

Financial data has become much more important to exchanges and trading houses as computerized trading or bot trading has become more popular. Marketplaces like the London Stock Exchange are trying to offer more one-stop-shop solutions to their customers by adding data and messages.

The appointment of Ms. Galloni, who received the 2020 Lawrence Minard Editor Award from the Gerald Loeb Foundation, which honors business journalists, fills a top journalism job as other major newsrooms look for their next top editors. Norman Pearlstine retired from the top newsroom job at the Los Angeles Times in December, and Martin Baron, the editor-in-chief of the Washington Post, called it a career in February. The two releases are expected to name their replacements soon.

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