Two leading nonprofit news organizations agree to merge operations

Journalism / Article

Jeff Ubben, chairman of The Bay Citizen’s board of directors, addresses Bay Citizen staff after a merger between The Bay Citizen and the Center for Investigative Reporting was approved. Photo Credit: The Bay Citizen 

Two leading nonprofit news organizations, the Center for Investigative Reporting and The Bay Citizen, have formally agreed to merge their operations, creating one of the largest nonprofit organizations in the country focused on watchdog and accountability journalism. In a blog post about the planned merger, the Center for Investigative Reporting wrote:

“[We] are thrilled with the potential going forward to deliver high-caliber, high-impact journalism on all platforms – print, video, radio, data, multimedia and social media….We will be creating one of the largest newsroom tech teams in the country to build news apps around data, expanding our video and digital unit, and putting into place one of the most unique public engagement teams in the business.”

Also, as a part of the merger, the groups will “[explore] new ways to keep this all going by developing new products and revenue streams to sustain our journalism.”

Knight was an early investor in both The Bay Citizen and the Center for Investigative Reporting.  Knight also funded the free, open source Armstrong digital platform developed by The Bay Citizen and the Texas Tribune for use by all non-profit news organizations.  The foundation also supported the Center for Investigative Reporting’s pioneering California Watch project, a multimedia investigative news service used by dozens of California media outlets.

“The impact and strength of these organizations already is substantial. The merger makes them stronger.  They’ll have more reach and resources and if they use the technology as smartly as we think they will, they’ll have improved their chances at sustainability. They are leaders, showing the way for nonprofit news into this new century. We support the merger and are glad to be part of their partnership.”

The Bay Citizen adds: “The merger presents an unprecedented opportunity to create the largest nonprofit organization devoted to investigative and accountability reporting in the country, operating across the geographic spectrum, from the local to the global.” To learn more about when the merger will be finalized and what it means for each organization, read the Bay Citizen’s FAQ. The full press release about the merger is also available online.