• Sweden's news in English

The Local launches France's news in English

Caroline Bursell · 29 Aug 2011, 10:55

Published: 29 Aug 2011 10:55 GMT+02:00

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“The Local has identified France as a key market – the heart of Europe is a natural next step after Germany,” Paul O’Mahony, editor of thelocal.fr, told The Local.

Since its successful 2008 expansion to Germany, The Local has been focused on bringing its brand of local, online English-language news to other countries.

“It has been the plan from the start, when [CEO] Paul Rapacioli and [managing editor] James Savage set up The Local in Sweden seven years ago, to cover news from other countries in Europe,” said O’Mahony.

According to Savage, The Local targeted France for the company's current round of expansion in part because the country isn't well-served by the English language news media.

"We also always had France as a target for our next step because it’s not just politically but culturally so important in Europe and it’s a focus of so much interest and attention,” he added.

At first, The Local's French edition will feature a somewhat scaled-down version of the offerings currently available on the more fully-developed Swedish and German sites.

However, the focus on news that matters to foreign professionals and expats that has been the hallmark of Sweden's other sites will remain the same.

“People will be able to go onto the French site and feel that it is very much, The Local," said Savage.

"The main point is that it’s going to have the same ethos and the same focus on news and practical information for foreigners.”

And with time, the content available on The Local's French edition is certain to expand, according to Savage.

“Over the course of the next year the amount of material we’re producing will increase, in line with an increase in readership,” he said.

With the launch of its French site, The Local is getting closer to its goal of reaching English-speaking foreign professionals across Europe.

“The plan was always to expand and set up sites across Europe, with companies such as Almi Invest helping to make that possible,” O’Mahony explained, referring to a group of seven Swedish regional venture capital funds that helped support The Local's current round of expansion.

Story continues below…

According to O'Mahony, The Local is preparing to roll out to more European countries in the "next weeks and months".

"We will have several more by the end of this year," he said.

Norway and Belgium are next."

The Local was founded in 2004 by Rapacioli and fellow Brit James Savage and is based in Stockholm. The company is owned by the founders, Sjätte AP-fonden, IQube, Almi Invest, and a number of private investors.

Related links:

Caroline Bursell (news@thelocal.se)

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Your comments about this article

12:52 August 29, 2011 by JulieLou40
Nothing like blowing your own trumpet, is there? Here's hoping the French chimps can at least type better than the Swedish ones that do the articles on here.
13:36 August 29, 2011 by jamesblish
I'm impressed! The Local must've found some of the very few french people that actually speak and write decent english.
14:04 August 29, 2011 by stenhuggaren
Let's hope you can take some of the discussion forum goons (like #1) with you.
15:15 August 29, 2011 by Gabin
Bonne chance.-.
23:37 August 29, 2011 by johan rebel
I hope nobody tells the French, or else they will insist that France's News in English is published in French only.
07:27 August 30, 2011 by Smetad_Anarkist
I like The Local. Despite being Swedish and living in Sweden since birth I prefer the local over several other news sites.

And I think that The Local should open a Japanese edition. And with that said I would like to volunteer for a Japanese edition of The Local. Despite the fact that I don't speak Japanese. My English could be a lot better. And I have no journalistic experience what so ever.

... But I am willing to learn.
10:43 August 30, 2011 by cogito
Thank you, TheLocal. We need this, as the Swedish media does an abysmal job in covering French news.

Ignore #1. She sounds like someone has been in Sweden long enough to adopt the kind of rudeness that made this country famous.

@#1. Le Monde and Le Figaro are both available for readers with your high standards.
15:46 August 30, 2011 by Nemesis
This could be very funny.

Anti-semitism is illegal in France.

The first comment made by the usual bigots from the local and the owner and commentator gets a nice jail term. That might stop the bigotry on the local.
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