In many ways, 2021 was a challenging year. At the global level, the COVID-19 epidemic has not ceased to punctuate our daily lives, with successive waves of new variants to remind us of our obligation to act responsibly to protect ourselves, individually and collectively. At the level of Lebanon, the equation is the same: the economic crisis has come to remind us, through successive shocks, of the high price we must pay for having neglected, for years, the obligation of good economic, social and political governance,, which is incumbent on us and on our leaders.
Faith in the future, at the service of our readers
In the face of this adversity, the L'Orient-Le Jour / L'Orient Today group is determined to continue its march towards the future. Like all our fellow citizens, like all those who keep faith in this country, we have no choice but to move forward. We are investing more than ever in our business, in our readers and in our journalistic mission.
A team of journalists at the forefront of the profession
This mission starts with maintaining and developing our teams of qualified and dedicated journalists to keep the torch of freedom, transparency and accountability burning in a country that needs it. This is evidenced by the investigations we have published on the many events that shook Lebanon; among them, the assassination of Lokman Slim, the "Congo Hold-up" case that addresses the financing of Hezbollah, or the investigation into the causes of the explosion at the port of Beirut on August 4, 2020 and into the fate of the international aid that subsequently flowed into the country. One fundamental factor that enabled us to do this work was the establishment of partnerships with international groups at the forefront of investigative journalism, and with the capacity to conduct investigations in several countries in parallel. Our mission is also reflected in the daily work we do to decipher the news in the most accurate and impartial way possible. Finally, the Albert Londres Prize, the most prestigious award for a French-speaking journalist, which is almost never awarded outside of France, was given this year to our colleague Caroline Hayek for a series of reports carried out after the explosion in the Beirut port.
New products, new formats
Our efforts are also reflected in the development of new products, new platforms and new formats. L'Orient-Le Jour launched its new mobile application in the fall of 2021, with a rejuvenated design, functionalities and user friendliness, while L'Orient Today's application will be available later this year. The year 2022 will be full of new developments, with multiple elections in Lebanon (parliamentary, municipal, presidential) in a particularly delicate context, and we will aim to follow this news as closely as possible and to decipher its meaning, to keep you informed in real time and to provide you with the necessary perspective and insight during this critical period. Finally, our newsletters are a specialized tool intended for readers who are looking for targeted information on subjects that interest them; as such, we will continue to develop them.
Rise of L'Orient Today
L'Orient Today is also steadily pursuing its growth. As one of the only English-language news outlets in Lebanon, it offers real-time news coverage, solid and verified sources of information, as well as a reliable deciphering of the political, economic and social situation for the public in Lebanon and in the diaspora. The ability to address our public through two essential languages, English and French, offers us therefore an important space to pursue our development in Lebanon and abroad.
The strong growth of our digital subscriptions
As a result, the subscription curve of L'Orient-Le Jour / L'Orient Today has continued its strong growth in 2021, showing the success of our digital subscription model launched in 2014. The digital model has become now the reference for all media in the world, and it serves therefore as the basis for our ambition and strategy: to offer our readers a product of excellence.
The publication of our editorial charter
It is in this spirit that we are publishing today, for the first time, our editorial charter, the result of years of joint work by our management and our editorial teams. Of course, the principles enshrined in this charter are not new: they have been at the heart of our work for decades. But we felt it was important, as part of our communication with our readers, to lay out for the first time, in black and white, the values we stand for, the ethical principles we adhere to and the professional practices that guide our work. As the legislative elections approach, we felt it was important to publish this document to demonstrate transparency, especially since the local media scene will undoubtedly be targeted by attempts at clientelism and other political dynamics.
Strong, long-term support from our shareholders
What is the sustainability of L'Orient-Le Jour / L'Orient Today founded on? Let's face it: the Lebanese financial crisis since 2019 has indeed caused the collapse of the media's economic model, and in particular its advertising revenues. If our group survives today, it is mainly thanks to two categories of people: on the one hand, first and foremost, our readers, who have been quick to subscribe and to support us through their donations, and to support us through their donations; and, on the other hand, our shareholders, who have supported us and demonstrated their unfailing loyalty, while scrupulously respecting our independence, as confirmed by the publication of our editorial charter. That being said, our objective remains to regain our financial balance as soon as possible, by developing both in Lebanon and internationally, and we will work relentlessly for this in the years to come.
The Management Committee of L'Orient-Le Jour / L'Orient Today Group:
Nayla de Freige, CEO
Fouad Khoury Helou, Executive Directo
Elie Fayad, Editor-in-Chief
Emilie Sueur, editor in chief
Nicole Karkour, marketing director
Anthony Samrani, deputy editor-in-chief
Dear readers,In many ways, 2021 was a challenging year. At the global level, the COVID-19 epidemic has not ceased to punctuate our daily lives, with successive waves of new variants to remind us of our obligation to act responsibly to protect ourselves, individually and collectively. At the level of Lebanon, the equation is the same: the economic crisis has come to remind us, through successive...