SoCal JA newspaper at ‘crisis point’


LOS ANGELES — The Los Angeles-based Japanese American newspaper The Rafu Shimpo is in danger of closing, its Publisher and President Michael Komai wrote in an open letter that was posted March 25.

The Little Tokyo newspaper, whose origins date back to 1903, is currently at a “crisis point,” Komai wrote. “For the last three years, The Rafu has been losing money at an alarming rate: $750,000 over three years, with a projected deficit of $350,000 this year. The losses have been covered by the Komai family trust, but that remedy is unsustainable in the long run. If the situation does not improve this year, The Rafu will be forced to close in December of this year.”

The newspaper, which publishes in both English and Japanese, has launched a digital subscription drive, and will attempt to sign up 10,000 subscribers, which Komai said is “roughly equivalent to raising $500,000 in new revenue.”

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