Leading newspaper to be catalyst in digital media startups

New York Daily News: 'We want to be part of the change of the industry, and not just sitting on the sidelines.'

The traditional newspaper industry may be struggling, but some are taking the initiative to get out in front of the digital media revolution.

The New York Daily News says it is launching an "Innovation Lab" with the intention of working with entrepreneurs who seek to transform the media industry. The lab will bring early-stage companies into the Daily News' orbit, and furnish the startups with a range of services, as well as access to a national audience of potential customers. In exchange, the Daily News will have access to potential cutting-edge innovations in the digital media space.

"We want to be a part of what's going on with the startup community. We want to be part of the change of the industry, and not just sitting on the sidelines," says Cyna Alderman, managing director of the Daily News Innovation Lab. "We want to help catalyze that change and be a part of it."

The media company has lined up a slate of entrepreneurs, venture capitalists, angel investors, and professionals who will provide advice, mentorship and support to the companies. The Innovation Lab will offer access to the Daily News in-house team, technical infrastructure (hosting, servers, storage) and a national audience. Participating companies will also have access to external professional services, including legal services, financial services, human resources assistance, and office space.

The Daily News also intends to offer up to $25,000 in seed funding to the startups it brings under its wing.

Projects the Daily News is interested in supporting include intuitive interactives (data visualization), predictive Intelligence (analytics) and user engagement.  Applications for participation in the Innovation Lab will be accepted from October 1 through October 31. The target start-date for selected companies is December 2.

Successful applicants to the Innovation Lab will work in the Daily News offices alongside Daily News staff who will advise them through the formation and development phases, permitting companies to test their products on the Daily News’s digital properties, and ultimately, when there is a product or service to sell, assisting the company in growing its business.

This post was originally published on Smartplanet.com