The two nonprofit organizations hope that uniting will increase revenues and allow them both to reach new readers.
The Jewish Telegraphic Agency (JTA) and MyJewishLearning (MJL) have announced plans to merge their nonprofit media operations. Both sites aim to provide news, information and interaction on Judaism and Jewish topics, without political bias or denominational bent.
According to a joint news release, the planned merger will allow the two organizations to increase revenues and grow readership through unified and expanded audience development, business development and fundraising teams. With more resources and greater reach, the combined entity will be able to improve content as well as create new distribution mechanisms for engaging new readers, the release said.
The organizations' boards spent several months exploring the merger and are signing a non-binding letter of intent to move forward, the release continued. JTA's CEO and editor in chief, Ami Eden, will be CEO and executive editor of the combined organization. Meredith Lewis, the director of operations of MyJewishLearning, will be the new organization's chief operating officer.
Eden, originally from Philadelphia, is a graduate of Akiba Hebrew Academy, now known as Barrack, and a former staffer at the Jewish Exponent. Lisa Hostein, the executive editor of the Jewish Exponent, spent nearly 15 years as the editor of JTA, which will continue to provide content to the Jewish Exponent and other Jewish media.
The combined organization will maintain all existing brands, which include JTA, Kveller, MJL, and Jewniverse, and also create new content to serve the diverse Jewish community.
JTA and MJL plan to execute a definitive merger agreement later this year, at which point additional details about the new organization will be announced.
Founded in 1917, JTA is an international news agency that for nearly a century has been covering developments impacting Jews in North America, Israel and countries around the world. The JTA website now contains an archive of more than 250,000 articles dating back to 1923, searchable by keyword or date. The JTA website attracts about 300,000 unique visitors per month. In addition, JTA content is syndicated to nearly 80 Jewish and Israeli newspapers and websites.
Founded in 2002, MyJewishLearning, Inc. leverages the Internet and other new media to spread knowledge of Jewish religion, history, values, traditions and culture. MJL properties reach more than 650,000 unique visitors a month. The organization currently publishes MyJewishLearning.com, a transdenominational Jewish educational website, and Kveller.com, a Jewish parenting online community. MJL also publishes TheJewniverse.com, a spin-off of its popular daily email.