Everything has to start somewhere and the origins of the company behind The Euro Weekly News are easily pinpointed. After all, we’re not talking the source of the Nile here, but hey – the journey from there to here has not been without its hazards. And anyone with doubts about the Theory of Evolution should give it a second chance after looking at how over the last 12 years the paper has become the largest free English language newspaper in Spain.
The story behind the company is the story of development from free sheet to – what else but a free newspaper? There is feeling in the publishing world that there is something not quite nice – or should that be quaite naice? – about producing a free newspaper but Steven and Michel Euesden proudly turn out five editions of a publication whose readers forget its status until they realise they are not asked to pay for it.
Steven and Michel Euesden erupted on to the Costa del Sol in 1997. Separately they had already enjoyed flourishing careers in sales and together they were unstoppable although it’s tough to triumph in on Iberia’s costas. The English-language media and communications present a harsh challenge that part of the world. Deep at the heart of an idyllic landscape lies a jungle where media professionals – and a few amateurs – chase the same clients and readership. A publication that depends and survives entirely on advertising for its revenue and the process is one of survival of the fittest.
What is now the Euro Weekly News has survived and is very, very fit indeed – not that this upbeat phrase tells the whole story. Building up the company and taking it where it is today took nerve – and nerves of steel. When Steven and Michel Euesden breathed new life into a faltering publication 12 years ago some spoke hopefully of winds of change. For others they were new brooms and the clean sweep they produced was unwelcome and uncomfortable to adjust to.
At the time of Steven and Michel Euesden’s arrival there were two editions of the newspaper. There were cockroaches in one office, and in another there was a bathroom but no kitchen so the coffee mugs and teacups had to be washed up in the loo. As soon as she could Michel tracked down new premises and transformed the publication’s tired and faintly seedy appearance into today’s dynamic and polished image with showcase offices near the motorway exit at Arroyo de la Miel.
Along with the new image came clearer policies and a better newspaper. Naturally there were new clients but it is a measure of the company’s success that many of those from 12 years back are still advertising. Steven and Michel Euesden believed at the outset – and still believe – that there are unique opportunities along Iberia’s tourist and residential coasts. What better way of promoting a company or business than in a quality publication that appeals to English-speakers of all nationalities?
There were people who stayed with the company after Michel and Steven Euesden took over and some are still there today. There were people who came and went, never to return and yet other employees came, went and returned. The three sad gaps left by the passing away of Linda Orenstein, Barbara Ainscough and Andrew Jackson can never be filled because all three played such an important part in building the foundations of a thriving company.
Inevitably, there were people who could not take the pace in the early days. Michel famously once rang up a branch office and asked to speak to another member of staff. “Oh X is in the next room, chatting to Y,” came the insouciant reply from someone with little grasp of Michel’s work ethic which is summed up succinctly and unforgivingly as “hard graft.” The hapless taker of the call heard a moment’s ominous silence and was then sweetly advised to tell both X and Y to get their fingers out because a newspaper “wasn’t a bloody sewing circle”
Nor is it.
Sewing circles turn out cross-stitch and antimacassars in quiet moments of relaxation and Steven and Michel Euesden turn out newspapers in fraught moments of complete frenzy, assisted by an enthusiastic bi-cultural team of dedicated personnel. That’s the way it is in their line of business but that weekly bout of hysteria now produces separate editions of the Euro Weekly News for the Costa del Sol, Heart of Andalucía, Costa de Almería, the Costa Blanca and Mallorca.
These editions provide a rare mix of local news, opinionated columnists, articles touching on everything under the sun and a letters’ page that irritates every other newspaper on the coast. As well as the five titles of the Euro Weekly News there were publications like Contact and b2b. Contact is a directory for the adult leisure and pleasure industry on Spain’s southern coast, while b2b was a glossy magazine for English-speaking businesses and services, the first of its kind. The company also has a website crammed with news, sports and current affairs which registers a massive volume of European web traffic.The success of b2b led Steven and Michel to sell it on in order to refocus their attentions fully on their EWN newspapers.
Steven and Michel Euesden take the view that a venture like theirs is an adventure, too. It’s not without its perils and hairy moments, but it is an adventure they want every reader and client to feel caught up in. They’ve always said they want a feelgood publication and how could it be otherwise when they feel good about it – and so does everyone else.
Stats & Figures about the Euro Weekly News:
The Euro Weekly News is a series of five, well-established English language newspapers in Spain distributed FREE throughout the spanish mainland and Mallorca with a total weekly distribution of 125,000 copies read by over a quarter of a million people every week. The five editions cover the Costa del Sol, Heart of Andalucia (Ronda to Antequera), Costa Blanca, Costa de Almeria and Mallorca.
Each edition contains local news, satellite TV guide, plus European news and financial information (including stocks and shares listings). We feature items of local interest, plus information on what’s on and where to go with entertainment news and updates. In all, we believe that we are providing the most comprehensive and definitive FREE NEWSPAPER aimed at the ex-pat population in Southern Europe.
Our newspaper is innovative and exciting, and our advertising rates are extremely competitive in relation to other publications.
We have a strong support team covering sales, production, marketing and after sales who are always on hand to help with your advertising requirements and queries.
Let us help you to enhance your business through our powerful advertising medium.