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FT UK Business Conference

Opportunities for Future Growth in the North

Manchester |
Speakers include:
Bridget  Rosewell OBE

Bridget Rosewell OBE

Senior Advisor, Volterra Partners

Prof. Juergen Maier

Prof. Juergen Maier


Jake Berry

Jake Berry

Minister for the Northern Powerhouse and Local Growth


Financial Times is proud to present the inaugural FT UK Business Conference, bringing together leading executives from local and global UK business, government and think tanks to explore the opportunities and challenges facing British business throughout the North of England in a post-Brexit environment. This event will highlight successful strategies and obstacles within innovation, talent, trade, growth, technology and all of the key areas of focus involved with maintaining and growing a prosperous business. 

fallback Add to my Calendar 05/24/2018 08:00:0005/24/2018 16:30:00trueFT UK Business ConferenceFinancial Times is proud to present the inaugural FT UK Business Conference, bringing together leading executives from local and global UK business, government and think tanks to explore the opportunities and challenges facing British business throughout the North of England in a post-Brexit environment. This event will highlight successful strategies and obstacles within innovation, talent, trade, growth, technology and all of the key areas of focus involved with maintaining and growing a prosperous business. FT-UK-Business-Conference4ba879ae3c51b3ca8f6a832fc71b9d50MM/DD/YYYY

Full Overview

The success of UK companies must come from their ability to innovate, export, expand, garner government support and to build recognisable brands that will one day become world-renowned. This success does not come without its challenges as companies search for growth capital, try to maintain and attract high-quality talent, keep up-to-date with the latest technologies and deal with a turbulent economic environment.

In a country that has a London centric viewpoint on business, other areas of the UK are not always in the spotlight. However, the North of England has a booming business sector and due to the cost and infrastructure pressures in the capital and the South East, there are benefits of looking elsewhere. Will the government’s ‘Northern Powerhouse’ proposal provide the right infrastructure to support current and future business? How can investment be spread evenly throughout the region? Can the strong manufacturing, science, technology and service sectors match the investment seen in the south? What does the future hold for northern business?

Following the triggering of Article 50, businesses and public sector leaders in the UK are grappling with what leaving the EU could mean for them and the economy and how a cross-sectoral public-private approach may be the answer to ensure stakeholder’s long-term needs are met.


Keynote Speakers (2)

Bridget  Rosewell OBE

Bridget Rosewell OBE

Commissioner, National Infrastructure Commission
Senior Advisor, Volterra Partners

Bridget Rosewell is an entrepreneur, company director, programme and project appraiser and developer of economic cases.  She trained as an economist at Oxford University and taught there before working as a professional economist at various consultancies, two of which she founded and developed.  She is now mainly a non-executive, with stints in public and private and the mutual sector.  She is currently Chair of the Driver Vehicle Standards Agency, Senior Independent Director at Network Rail, Chair of Audit at Atom Bank, and a member of the With Profits Committee at Royal London as well as a Commissioner with the National Infrastructure Commission. She writes on infrastructure, project evaluation and modelling as well as acting as Senior Adviser for Volterra Partners.

Prof. Juergen Maier

Prof. Juergen Maier

UK Chief Executive

Juergen Maier was appointed Chief Executive of Siemens UK on 1 July 2014. He has been a member of the Siemens UK Executive Board since 2008, and held senior roles within Siemens in the UK and Germany including Managing Director of Industrial activities for the UK and Manufacturing Director of the award-winning Drives factory in Congleton. Mr Maier joined Siemens in 1986 with a BSc in production engineering from Nottingham Trent University, on a Siemens-sponsored graduate programme. He was made an Honorary Professor of Engineering at the University of Manchester in March 2014. He is a passionate advocate of the UK rebalancing its economy and supports many UK-wide initiatives championing manufacturing, improved infrastructure and engineering skills. Mr Maier was appointed as a non-Executive Board member of the UK Government Department of Business Innovation and Skills in 2014, is Chairman of the North West Business Leadership team and a board member of Greater Manchester LEP.  

Speakers (13)

Jake Berry

Jake Berry

Parliamentary Under Secretary of State
Minister for the Northern Powerhouse and Local Growth

In June 2017 Jake Berry was appointed as the Minister for the Northern Powerhouse & Local Growth at the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government. In May 2015 he was appointed as Parliamentary Private Secretary to the Rt Hon. Greg Hands MP, Chief Secretary to the Treasury. In April 2013, he was asked by the Prime Minister to join his influential Policy Board and advise him on housing, local government and regional growth in Downing Street. In September 2012 Grant was appointed Conservative Party Chairman with Mr Berry remaining as his PPS. He was appointed as Parliamentary Private Secretary to the Rt Hon. Grant Shapps MP, Minister for Housing and Local Government in 2010. This valuable experience has enabled him to effectively champion affordable housing and the Construction Sector within the House of Commons. Before becoming a Member of Parliament for Rossendale and Darwen in 2010, he specialised in Housing and Development Law. He was educated at Liverpool College, followed by the University of Sheffield, and trained as a solicitor in the City of London.

Sarah Glendinning

Sarah Glendinning

Regional Director

Sarah Glendinning is Regional Director in the north east for business organisation the CBI, representing member interests at a local, national and international level. As part of her role, Ms Glendinning is engaged with a number of groups working to improve economic opportunity in the region. She currently represents CBI on the NECA Economic Development and Regeneration Advisory Board works with both regional LEP’s on education and economic projects, including Chairing the advisory group for North East Ambition. She is passionate about raising aspirations in our young people and is involved in a range of diversity initiatives.

Nick Henry

Nick Henry

James Fisher and Sons
Leo Johnson

Leo Johnson

Disruption Lead

Leo Johnson leads PwC's Disruption practice and co-presents the Radio 4 series “FutureProofing”, exploring the impacts of exponential technologies on business and society. Formerly at the World Bank, he is the co-Founder of the advisory firm Sustainable Finance, now part of the PwC network. He is the co-author of “Turnaround Challenge: Business and the City of the Future” (Oxford University Press, 2013) and a Visiting Business Fellow at the Smith School of Enterprise & Environment at Oxford University.

Jon Andrews

Jon Andrews

Member of UK Executive Board, Head of Technology and Investments

Jon Andrews is spear-heading the digital transformation across PwC as part of his role on the Executive Board and prior to that he led our People and Organisation Network in the UK and globally. Mr Andrews joined PwC as a Partner in 2007 from Accenture, where he had been a Partner since 2001. He’s able to share PwC’s story of innovation, and how we’re investing to keep up with an ever changing business environment. He has helped clients along similar journeys too, having worked with clients across several industry sectors including high tech, FMCG, financial services, government and pharmaceuticals and has spent time working and living abroad in Kuala Lumpur and Zurich.

Emma  Degg

Emma Degg

Chief Executive Officer
North West Business Leadership Team

Emma Degg is the Chief Executive of the North West Business Leadership Team (NWBLT). The NWBLT brings together leaders of national and international businesses with substantial commitments and interests in the North West of England.  The Team works to exert its collective influence for the long-term good of the region, economically, environmentally, culturally and socially. Ms Degg has spent her career focussed upon bringing together business leaders and policy makers to make a tangible difference, nationally, across the North West and in local government.  She regards the promotion of responsible business leadership as essential to the future of the UK economy, in particular the importance of inspiring and encouraging young people to achieve their full potential.

David  Duffy

David Duffy

Chief Executive Officer

David Duffy became CEO of Clydesdale and Yorkshire Banks in June 2015. In February 2016, he successfully led and completed the demerger and IPO of Clydesdale Bank from National Australia Group (NAG) Europe Limited, re-creating a fully independent banking group, CYBG PLC, and becoming CEO of the newly listed bank. CYBG operates the Clydesdale Bank, Yorkshire Bank and B brands in the UK and has a shareholder base spanning the UK, US and Australia. CYBG is the only UK banking group to have a dual listing on the London Stock Exchange and Australian Securities Exchange.

 From 2011 to 2015 Mr Duffy was Chief Executive Officer of Allied Irish Banks (AIB), one of the largest retail and commercial banks in Ireland.  He was pivotal in the turnaround of AIB returning it to a profit-making institution after its 2009 3.5bn euro bailout by the Irish Government. In 2006 Mr Duffy joined Standard Bank PLC as Chief Executive Officer of Standard Bank International. He was responsible for Corporate and Investment banking activities in addition to overseas retail business units. The role covered Asia, Latin America, the UK and Europe. He relocated to Singapore in 2010 where he was also Head of Strategic Projects for Standard Bank PLC. He began his career with Management Consulting firm Craig Gardner in Dublin in 1984 and between 1987 and 2006 held varioussenior management, Global Head and Board positions in Goldman Sachs and ING Barings ending his career at ING as Head of Global Wholesale Banking Network. He holds two degrees from the University of Dublin’s Trinity College - Master of the Arts (MA) and Bachelor of Business Studies (BBS Hons).

Clive  Memmott

Clive Memmott

Chief Executive
Greater Manchester Chamber of Commerce

Clive Memmott took up his appointment as Chief Executive of Greater Manchester Chamber of Commerce in September 2010. This is the largest Chamber in the UK and won the UK "Chamber of the Year" award in 2017/18. Prior to this he was a Director of Robinson Keane, the executive recruitment consultancy and held a number of non-executive directorships. He is a Director of the British Chambers of Commerce, Board Member of the Council of British Chambers of Commerce in Europe, Brockholes Enterprises Ltd (the award winning nature reserve), Business Finance Solutions, a Trustee of the National Football Museum and an advisor to the Board of the Manchester Growth Company. Mr Memmott also has a number of other advisory and non-executive positions and is a regular speaker and writer on a wide range of business issues. After qualifying as a lawyer, he enjoyed a successful career in the manufacturing industry holding senior positions in the Hepworth, Steetley and Redland Groups and as MD of Tate Access Floor Systems before becoming Chief Executive of Business Link Lancashire, a role he held for 8 years. He is an Honorary Research Fellow of the Lancaster University Management School and has co-authored a book on improving business performance through effective and practical employee engagement – “Growing your own Heroes”.

Lucy Armstrong

Lucy Armstrong

Chairman Advisory Board
Enterprise Research Centre
Piers  Linney

Piers Linney

Chairman, Soulmate Food;
Investor, Trustee, Nesta; Former Dragon on BBC's Dragons' Den

Piers Linney is an entrepreneur and investor who is best-known for his appearance as an investor on BBC2’s Dragons’ Den.   He is a non-executive director of British Business Bank, the UK government-owned development bank that has facilitated £6.2bn of funding for SMEs and he is a Trustee of Nesta, the UK’s largest innovation charity with a £450m endowment.  He has been recognised as one of the top 100 most influential Black Britons and won the inaugural Entrepreneur of the Year award at the EY sponsored Black British Business Awards. 

Mr Linney has a professional background in the City where he qualified as a lawyer with SJ Berwin before joining the investment banking teams at Barclays de Zoete Wedd (BZW) and Credit Suisse First Boston.  He was CEO of a corporate finance business raising funds for technology start-ups, SMEs and special situations before becoming a partner at an alternative finance fund specialising in providing structured debt and equity to small caps. He has founded and exited several technology and communication businesses and has won a range of entrepreneurship awards.

Marian Sudbury

Marian Sudbury

Director, Global Operations
‎Department for International Trade
Dean  Cook

Dean Cook

Head of Regional Engagement
Innovate UK

Dean Cook is Head of Regional Engagement for Innovate UK, the national innovation agency. He leads a team of regional managers responsible for developing Innovate UK’s regional strategy for England and who have developed strong relationships with local and devolved authorities. Prior to this, Dean was Innovate UK’s regional manager for Yorkshire, Humber and the North East and with a technical background in agriculture and food, originally joined in 2014 as an innovation lead for that sector.  With 28 years practical experience in research commercialisation, he was formerly at Defra’s ‘Food and Environment Research Agency’ where his early career was as an applied biologist before moving into various roles within the agency’s commercial and science management teams. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Biology and an MBA graduate of the University of Warwick. Originally from the South of England, he has lived in York for 22 years and has represented Innovate UK on a number of Local Enterprise Partnership innovation boards across the North East, Yorkshire and Humber. He is passionate about the North of England, and a strong advocate for how the North can bring its world-class research-base and industries together, in order to unlock the economic opportunities brought be the ‘4th industrial revolution’.

Pete Gladwell

Pete Gladwell

Head of Public Sector Partnerships
Legal and General

Pete Gladwell joined Legal & General in August 2007, with responsibility for the design and development of new funds and overseeing relationships with pension funds, investment consultants, and insurance clients.  He led on the creation of a new generation of property funds particularly focussed on liability matching and Defined Contributions pension funds and L&G’s joint ventures with Dutch pension funds, which now total over £5 billion.  In 2013, he was appointed Head of Public Sector Partnerships, to lead L&G's direct investments across property and infrastructure into partnerships with Local and Combined Authorities, Registered Providers, Universities, the NHS, and central government, including One Public Estate and the “RIO Regeneration Investment Collective” with the Department of International Trade.  These investments total over £2bn.

Mr Gladwell was formally a Senior Analyst in DTZ Research and enjoyed an erstwhile life as a youth worker for seven years in the Oxfordshire area. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of the Arts and Member of Brasenose College, Oxford University; holding a post-graduate MA, as well as an initial degree in Computation. He also holds the Investment Management Certificate. He is also a Trustee for the Young Foundation, which works to create a more equal and just society through social innovation, and heavily involved in local community initiatives in Harlesden, London.


Chair (1)

Andrew  Bounds

Andrew Bounds

Northern Correspondent and Enterprise Editor
Financial Times

Andrew Bounds has been North of England correspondent for the Financial Times since July 2008 and was additionally appointed Enterprise Editor in 2011. He covers the “Northern powerhouse” and the changing face of the Northern and national economy, politics and society with special focus on small and start-up businesses and entrepreneurs. Mr Bounds has taken a close interest in the devolution of power from London and covered the mayoral races in Manchester, Liverpool and the West Midlands as well as the deals that preceded them. After the surprise Brexit vote in June 2016, there has been an increased appetite for news from outside the M25. He regularly contributes to the FT’s Politics and technology podcasts and has appeared on BBC TV and Talk Radio.

He was previously a correspondent in Brussels for four years covering trade, environment, agriculture, transport consumer and health policies and the European Parliament. He joined the FT in 1997 as a sub-editor after beginning his journalism career at the Kentish Express in Ashford in 1995. He has a degree in International History and Politics from the University of Leeds.

Moderators (2)

Chris Giles

Chris Giles

Economics Editor
Financial Times

‪Chris Giles is the Economics Editor of the Financial Times. He leads the reporting of economics in the newspaper and on, and has been economics editor since 2004. 

He reports on international economic trends and the British economy, and contributes comment to’s premium blog, dedicated to central banking and money supply. He was previously the FT’s leader writer on economic affairs. 

Mr Giles was named Business Journalist of the Year at the British Journalism Awards 2012. He has also won the Royal Statistical Society’s prize for excellence in journalism in 2008 and 2012. He is a member of the 2014 advisory board of the Journal of the European Economic Association. 

Before becoming Economics Editor, he spent a year at the communications regulator, Ofcom, writing reports about digital switchover and public service broadcasting. 

Prior to joining the Financial Times in 2000, Mr Giles was an economics reporter at the BBC. He started his career in research, spending seven years as an economist for the Institute for Fiscal Studies and has a wide publications record. At the IFS he led or worked on projects for clients including the Treasury, the OECD and the European Commission. 

Mr Giles is a graduate of Cambridge University and holds a Master’s degree in economics from Birkbeck College, London University.

Chris Tighe

Chris Tighe

North East England Correspondent
Financial Times

Chris Tighe is the FT’s north east England correspondent. She writes for all sections of the paper with a focus on the economic rebalancing of the UK economy, regional development and social change. Based in north east England, she has worked for the FT since 1991. As well as charting the end of the region’s coal mining, shipbuilding and iron and steelmaking, she has written about the growth of new sectors and activities and the physical transformation of older industrial areas and city centres.

Agenda - 24th May

  • 8:00am
    Registration and Networking
  • 9:00am
    Opening Remarks

    Andy Bounds, Northern Correspondent, Financial Times

  • 9:10am
    Keynote Interview - Government and Economic outlook

    Opportunities and Challenges for business in the north of England

    Current Political challenges facing the region

    Bridget Rosewell OBE, Commissioner, National Infrastructure Commission; Senior Advisor, Volterra Partners

    Moderator - Chris Giles, Economics Editor, Financial Times

  • 9:40am
    Interview – CEO Outlook

    We will hear from a global CEO discussing business prospects in the North of England

    Prof. Juergen Maier, FREng, UK Chief Executive, Siemens plc

  • 10:10am
    Panel – The Middle Market Backbone
    • What are the latest developments in government policy to support business growth in the North of England?
    • How can the private sector be grown so that small to medium sized business can help balance the economy?Is this growth strategy appropriate for the north? What are the main opportunities and challenges for these organisations in the North of England?
    • How can organisations prepare for the changes that Brexit may bring? What effect will this have on talent and potential trade? How can businesses be supported to enter the export market?
    • What are the key factors for driving innovation and how can it be embedded into the core of a business’s spine?
    • How can SMEs win in changing markets and how can they tackle barriers to growth? What is the role of technology in strengthening trade relations?

    Clive Memmott, Chief Executive, Greater Manchester Chamber of Commerce

    David Duffy, Chief Executive Officer, CYBG

    Lucy Armstrong, Chair, Enterprise Research Centre

    Jake Berry, Minister for the Northern Powerhouse and Local Growth

  • 10:55am
    Coffee Break
  • 11:20am
    Panel – Northern Investment and trade
    • Are northern voices sufficiently heard in national conversation?
    • What are the main attractions for investment in cities and areas outside of London?
    • What is the future for UK regional development and investment after Brexit? What ‘hotspots’ are foreign investors looking at in regional UK?
    • Since the referendum what effects has this had on trade and business with Europe? Does it make more  sense to relocate?
    • What effect will the fall in the value of the pound have on export and import?
    • Is there increased volatility ahead?
    • What does a hard Brexit mean for international trade and UK businesses, and what challenges and opportunities do they face? What are the challenges and opportunities of a new UK-US trade deal?

    Emma Degg, Chief Executive Officer, North West Business Leadership Team

    Pete Gladwell, Head of Public Sector Partnerships, Legal and General

    Nick Henry, Chief Executive Officer, James Fisher and Sons plc

    Marian Sudbury, Director, Global Operations, Department for International Trade 

    Sarah Glendinning, Regional Director, CBI

  • 12:10pm
    Presentation - Disrupt or be disrupted

    Leo Johnson, Disruption Lead, PwC

  • 12:20pm
    Panel - Nurturing innovation and technology for the future of business

    Innovation is vital to a company’s digital transformation journey and as technologies are becoming more advanced business must learn to adapt and integrate new ideas to create a more streamlined and successful business. In this session, we will look at Innovation in the North of England.


    • What are the key ingredients required for business innovation? What are the main obstacles in weaving these ingredients into the structure of business?
    • As technology improves at an exponential rate, how can businesses be looking to future potential change while dealing with current change in order to keep up with technological progression?
    • What challenges can larger companies have when it comes to innovation? How can companies of all sizes organize themselves in the best way to facilitate innovation flow?
    • How are local authorities helping the growth of innovation and technology hubs? What more can be done to support innovation start-ups?

    Piers Linney, Chairman, Soulmate Food, Investor, Trustee, Nesta

    Dean Cook, Head of Regional Engagement, Innovate UK

    Jon Andrews, Member of UK Executive Board, Head of Technology and Investments, PwC

  • 1:05pm
  • 2:00pm
    Breakout roundtables

    The breakout roundtables are small group discussions designed to allow attendees to discuss in detail a specific challenge, strategy or opportunity set. Held under the Chatham House rule to encourage an open debate, delegates will be able to choose from four discussions. Topics areas will include: AI, trade and export, talent and cyber. 


    Discussion about the growing impact of AI on business models and operations, and how these technologies can be deployed to improve productivity, reduce costs and better engage consumers. 

    Trade and export

    Discussion into the opportunities and challenges in trade and export in the region, especially with regards to Brexit, and how businesses are transforming their operating models to adapt.


    A discussion in to what concerns public and private sector organisations have about access to skills and how are they addressing these issues. How are labour markets evolving across UK and Europe and how can businesses plan for the impact of harder borders on talent acquisition?


    A discussion about the future of cyber within business and how companies of all sizes are developing effective cyber security strategies to adapt to the changing environment. 

  • 3:00pm
    Summation of roundtable sessions

    Moderators of each breakout will discuss their findings with our chair Andrew Bounds, Northern Correspondent and Enterprise Editor, Financial Times

  • 3:20pm
    Innovation presentations and award

    Opportunity for cutting-edge innovative start-ups from the region to present stories for how they are helping shape the North of England. Winner voted on by the audience

  • 3:50pm
    Concluding keynote address
  • 4:20pm
    Closing remarks

    Andrew Bounds, Northern Correspondent, Financial Times



SME Ticket *

£299 + VAT

Standard ticket

£499 + VAT (Excludes service providers)

Service providers

£899  + VAT

*SME Ticket eligible for companies with 250 employees or less


Be in good company

Join key senior executives from top companies including:


Bentley Motors


Co-operative Group 

Dixons Carphone

Essar Oil 

Ford Motor Company 




Liverpool FC 

Lloyds Bank 

Manchester City Council


Network Rail


& more.



The Principal Hotel
Oxford Street
Manchester M60 7HA

United Kingdom

Tel: 0161 288 1111


With the support of (1)

Yorkshire Bank was founded in 1859 in Halifax, West Yorkshire. Yorkshire Bank has 182 retail branches, a strong personal customer base and a business banking capability through a UK-wide network. Yorkshire Bank is a trading name of Clydesdale Bank PLC.

Lead Sponsor (1)

At PwC, our purpose is to build trust in society and solve important problems. It is this focus which informs the services we provide and the decisions we make. With offices in 158 countries and more than 236,000 people, we are among the leading professional services networks in the world.

To achieve our aim to be recognised as the ‘the leading professional services firm’ we must be innovative, responsible and attract outstanding people. We have to reimagine the possible to stay ahead, but to survive and thrive in the digital revolution, we must balance business understanding with technology innovation and human insight. We do that through Intelligent Digital. We have invested heavily in building our technology capability focusing on core areas that we believe will bring most value to our clients, including cyber security, data and analytics, emerging technologies and technology consulting.Using our responsible technology approach we look to maximise the positive impacts of technological advances on business, society and people, while minimising any negative ones. 

Innovation Partner (1)

Innovate UK is the UK’s innovation agency. Innovate UK works with people, companies and partner organisations to find and drive the science and technology innovations that will grow the UK economy - delivering productivity, new jobs and exports. Our aim at Innovate UK is to keep the UK globally competitive in the race for future prosperity. For further information and to stay updated on our latest news visit, follow us on Twitter at @innovateuk or subscribe to our YouTube channel at

Media Partner (1)

M.E.N. Media is a truly multi-media business, serving Greater Manchester, Lancashire and Cheshire. An established and trusted brand within the community, setting the news agenda, providing unrivalled sports coverage and representing and fighting for our city. M.E.N. Media are reaching new audiences, in new ways, at new times in their days and via new platforms. They provide their audience with the relevant content they have come to expect, at a time and place that suits their needs. And we provide our clients with a  truly unique advertising opportunity, reaching over 85% of the Greater Manchester population every week.

Supporting Partners (2)

Greater Manchester Chamber is the largest Chamber of Commerce and an award-winning membership organisation, representing a third of the total workforce in Greater Manchester. The Chamber is an independent, not-for-profit company, working to create a better business environment for members, articulating their views and needs whatever their size, sector or location. The Chamber also offers a range of networking forums across Greater Manchester, free as part of membership, plus a variety of other events and services designed to benefit specific sectors or individuals and help businesses to grow. 

Established in Liverpool in over a decade ago to provide leadership to the private sector, by articulating the views of its members to the public-sector agencies that govern the city; and to create modern networking environments that would attract entrepreneurs, business owners and decision-makers, high growth companies, award winning Downtown in Business (DIB) has now established its services and brand in Lancashire, Manchester, Leeds, and Birmingham. DIB has earned a reputation as one of the most influential, effective business organisations in the North of England and the West Midlands. Brokering connections and deals, shaping public sector agendas, organising the best attended events in the region, hosting high profile gala dinners and attracting prominent speakers from the worlds of commerce and politics, DIB is the fastest growing business club outside of London.

Presented by (1)

The Financial Times is one of the world’s leading business news organisations, recognised internationally for its authority, integrity and accuracy. In 2016 the FT passed a significant milestone in its digital transformation as digital and services revenues overtook print revenues for the first time. The FT has a combined paid print and digital circulation of more than 910,000 and makes 60% of revenues from its journalism.

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