A bastion of Quebec journalism, La Presse, is undergoing a major change, severing ties with the powerful Desmarais family and becoming a non-profit entity.
The change, enabled by recent federal legislation, will allow the digital newspaper to accept donations as a source of revenue.
It’s a common model in the U.S., where wealthy foundations and donors help bankroll investigative and public interest journalism.
The Desmarais family has owned La Presse for more than 50 years as part of its conglomerate, Power Corporation.
The family will donate $50 million to the new entity before severing ties.
Founded in 1884, the French-language newspaper was created by conservatives who were dissatisfied with then Prime Minister John A. Macdonald.
In December 2017, the newspaper stopped printing paper copies and went exclusively digital.