The New Internationalist magazine has reached its crowdfunding target of £500,000. Set up 44 years ago as a worker co-operative, the New Internationalist launched a share offer to give readers the opportunity to invest and have a say in its future.
To enable this, the publisher changed its legal structure from a worker co-op registered as a company to a co-operative society.
Shareholders will become co-owners of the New Internationalist with voting rights over the publisher’s Charter, which enshrines its editorial policy.
“At 10.06 on Sunday night, 32 days into our Crowdfunder, we hit our £500,000 target. It was an amazing moment,” wrote Hazel Healy, co-editor at the magazine.
The New Internationalist plans to invest the funding raised through the share offer in re-designing and launching and marketing a new look publication as well as increasing multimedia content.
“Setting off on this journey was daunting, to say the least,” said Ms Healy. “Speaking to people during the course of this campaign more than one person asked politely – why did you set the target so high?
“By our calculations, half-a-million was the minimum we need to turn our business round. If that was a mountain to climb, we have now launched off in a glider, as we are now heading for a £600,000 stretch-target.”
She added that almost all pledges had come from ordinary people. The largest investment made so far came from a retired professor from Finland who has been subscribing to the magazine for over 30 years.
“It feels as if we are breaking new ground,” she said. “This truly is people-powered media that is defying the trend of media concentration and clickbait journalism. Our independence has always allowed us to tell stories the way they are meant to be told – without voyeurism and without spin.”