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According to The Wall Street Journal, media startup Axios is set to launch its first software product in February.

The platform, called AxiosHQ, will help businesses draft internal newsletters in the “just-the-facts” style that Axios is known for.

Tell Me, But in Bullet Points
After raising $57 million in venture capital, Axios has had a big few years with its high-profile political coverage and HBO show. Now, Axios wants a taste of recurring revenue and the valuation that comes with it.

Tool Specifics: AxiosHQ will help businesses streamline internal communications with a writing template that users can fill in. The software will provide a “Smart Brevity” score that gives feedback on how clear and succinct the writing is.

  • Users will have the ability to consult an independent team of editors at Axios.
  • Once the memo is sent, management will be able to track engagement analytics like open rates.
  • Speculating here: Extra points for starting briefs with “hope all is well” and closing with “tx.”

CEO James VandeHei has called the Axios style “exponentially more efficient” than traditional writing. With a starting price of $10,000 per year for AxiosHQ, one would hope so.

Diversify, Diversify, Diversify
Several news companies have had success selling their internal software as a subscription service:

  • The Washington Post’s technology platform, Arc, is used by around 90 companies and nets the company between $10,000 and $150,000 per customer.
  • Chorus, Vox Media’s publishing platform, was developed by the company for internal use. Now it’s used by 350 companies and is a growing part of Vox’s operations.

The Takeaway: So far Axios has 20 paying customers signed on including AT&T and Delta Air Lines.



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