Politico co-founder’s new media startup is eyeing $10,000 subscriptions — eventually


Advertising to start, then big-money subscriptions.

We still don’t know a lot about Axios, the yet-to-launch media startup founded by former Politico CEO Jim VandeHei. But we do know it’ll be expensive.

VandeHei is envisioning subscribers paying $10,000 or more for some of the startup’s news, he told Kara Swisher onstage at Recode’s Evening with Code Media on Wednesday night in New York City.

The one-time Washington Post journalist said he can’t imagine being “super intrigued with a subscription less than $10,000.”

The company’s coverage will center on business, technology, politics, and media. It will focus, as many media companies are, on putting content in front of readers on the social networks where they are already spending a lot of time.

At launch, Axios will be free to readers and supported by advertising. Two to three years down the line, VandeHei is targeting around 50 percent of revenue from advertising, and the other half from subscriptions and events.

Though it hasn’t launched, Axios already has 27 employees. Among the best known are former Politico mainstay Mike Allen, former Fortune tech and deals columnist Dan Primack, and Kim Hart, a former Politico editor who most recently ran communications for the Federal Communications Commission. The company hopes to have 50 employees when it launches early next year, VandeHei said in an earlier interview.

“Every piece of content we produce will be broken and narrated with true expertise – and then summarized in one shareable element,” a company “manifesto” reads. “You can decide whether to go deeper. Often, there’s no need. We have one agenda: help people get smarter, faster.”

Updating…

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