Heilbronn voice

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Heilbronn voice
description Heilbronn daily newspaper
language German
publishing company Heilbronner Voice GmbH & Co. KG
First edition March 28, 1946
Sold edition 75,051 copies
( IVW 2/2020, Mon-Sat)
Range 0.239 million readers
( MA 2018 )
Editor-in-chief Uwe Ralf Heer
executive Director Tilmann Distelbarth
Web link www.stimme.de
Article archive www.stimme.de/archivsuche
ZDB 126562-3
"House number plate" in front of the Heilbronner Voice printer building

The Heilbronner Voice (HSt) is a regional newspaper and the only daily newspaper in the city of Heilbronn in Baden-Württemberg . The publishing side of Heilbronner Stimme , which employs over 500 people, who will appear next four regional editions Heilbronner Stimme , the two daily papers Hohenloher Zeitung and Kraichgau voice and several advertising journals (u. A. Echo ). The circulation area of ​​the daily newspapers is the city of Heilbronn, the district of Heilbronn , the Hohenlohe district and individual communities in adjacent districts. The sold circulation is 75,051 copies, a decrease of 26.1 percent since 1998. The newspaper is printed in the Rhenish format . The publisher is Tilmann Distelbarth. Uwe Ralf Heer has been the editor-in-chief since July 1, 2006 .

The Heilbronner Stimme , according to the nonpartisan from each editorial board to be signed Guidelines "attitude of the newspaper" "liberal, liberal / progressive and independent of foreign influences." In her imprint it leads the additive "Independent newspaper". With the exception of the Egon Erwin Kisch Prize (now the Henri Nannen Prize ), the editorial team has won all important journalism prizes at least once, including a. the guard price of German daily newspapers , the Theodor Wolff Prize , the local journalists price of the Konrad Adenauer Foundation , the Adenauer Special Award and the Christopher Award .


The Heilbronner Voice ( including Kraichgau Voice and Hohenloher Zeitung ) appears in a total of six (up to October 1, 2017 nine) different main and local editions, which differ from each other only on a few pages in the local section:

  1. H, Heilbronn (city edition)
  2. N, District North ( Bad Friedrichshall , Bad Wimpfen , Erlenbach , Gundelsheim , Hardthausen am Kocher , Haßmersheim , Jagsthausen , Langenbrettach , Möckmühl , Neckarsulm , Neudenau , Neuenstadt am Kocher , Oedheim , Offenau , Roigheim , Untereisesheim , Widdern )
  3. W, West District ( Bönnigheim , Brackenheim , Cleebronn , Güglingen , Kirchheim am Neckar , Lauffen am Neckar , Leingarten , Massenbachhausen , Neckarwestheim , Nordheim , Pfaffenhofen , Schwaigern , Zaberfeld )
  4. O, district east ( Abstatt , Beilstein , Eberstadt , Ellhofen , Flein , Ilsfeld , Lehrensteinsfeld , Löwenstein , Oberstenfeld , Obersulm , Talheim , Untergruppenbach , Weinsberg , Wüstenrot )
  5. HZ, Hohenloher Zeitung (entire Hohenlohe district with Künzelsau and Öhringen , also Steinkirchen )
  6. KS, Kraichgau voice ( Bad Rappenau , Eppingen , Gemmingen , Hüffenhardt , Ittlingen , Kirchardt , Siegelsbach , Sulzfeld )

Distribution before October 1st, 2017:

  1. H, Heilbronn (city edition)
  2. NE, north-east (Hardthausen am Kocher, Jagsthausen, Langenbrettach, Möckmühl, Neudenau, Neuenstadt am Kocher, Roigheim, Widdern)
  3. NM, north-center (Bad Friedrichshall, Bad Wimpfen, Erlenbach, Gundelsheim, Haßmersheim, Neckarsulm, Oedheim, Offenau, Untereisesheim)
  4. KS, Kraichgau voice (Bad Rappenau, Eppingen, Gemmingen, Hüffenhardt, Ittlingen, Kirchardt, Siegelsbach, Sulzfeld)
  5. LT, Leintal (Leingarten, Massenbachhausen, Schwaigern)
  6. SW, south-west (Bönnigheim, Brackenheim, Cleebronn, Güglingen, Kirchheim am Neckar, Lauffen am Neckar, Neckarwestheim, Nordheim, Pfaffenhofen, Zaberfeld)
  7. SO, south-east (Abstatt, Beilstein, Flein, Ilsfeld, Oberstenfeld, Talheim, Untergruppenbach)
  8. WT, Weinsberger Tal (Eberstadt, Ellhofen, Lehrensteinsfeld, Löwenstein, Obersulm, Weinsberg, Wüstenrot)
  9. HZ, Hohenloher Zeitung (entire Hohenlohe district with Künzelsau and Öhringen, also Steinkirchen)


The Heilbronner Stimme , like most German newspapers in recent years to rest lost. The number of copies sold has fallen by an average of 1.9% per year over the past 10 years. Last year it decreased by 2.7%. It is currently 75,051 copies. The share of subscriptions in the circulation sold is 90.4 percent.

Development of the number of copies sold


Voice high-rise building on Allee in Heilbronn, built in 1957
Voice printing center in the industrial area, built in 1995

The Heilbronn Voice first appeared on March 28, 1946 with the US Military Government's license US-WB-102 , which was issued on March 26, 1946. It was the third licensed newspaper in Württemberg (after the Stuttgarter Zeitung and the Schwäbische Donau-Zeitung in Ulm, the current Südwest Presse ) and the 31st in the American zone of occupation . The title of the new newspaper was originally supposed to be Heilbronner Zeitung ; all three sample numbers printed for submission to the American military government on March 16 and 19, 1946 bear this title. The Americans, however, refused to allow newspaper titles that had already existed, and a Heilbronn newspaper had already existed from 1879 to 1920. Thus, based on the weekly newspaper Stuttgarter Voice published by the US authorities in 1945, the title Heilbronner Voice, which is unusual for a newspaper, came about .

The first publishers were Paul Distelbarth (1879–1963) and Hermann Schwerdtfeger (1903–1988). Distelbarth originally came from Bohemia, found pacifism in the First World War and came to the Heilbronn area in 1921. In 1933 he had to flee and became a correspondent in Paris. Schwerdtfeger, originally from Stuttgart, had worked as an editor for the Haller Tagblatt , where he was dismissed in 1933. Both men appeared to the US military authorities suitable to help build a new free press. Distelbarth's son Frank Distelbarth (1928–2012) joined the management in 1954 and became managing director in 1955. Until his retirement in 1998 he had a decisive influence on the further development of the publishing house.

The newspaper initially appeared three times a week, from autumn 1947 only twice a week due to a paper shortage, from August 1948 on again three times a week and from November 1, 1948 until today six times a week. In October 1950 the newspaper format was changed from the Berlin format to the larger Rhenish format . The circulation of the first edition was 38,000 copies at a price of 20 pfennigs each. By May 1948 it rose to 63,000 and fell back to 48,000 by 1951. In the period that followed, it rose again, until the first 100,000 copies were reached in 1979, a number that is still largely relevant today. In 1995, a record was reached with 117,000 printed copies and around 98,000 subscribers.

The newspaper was initially printed in the barn of the Zum Löwen inn in Großgartach (today Leingarten), and the editorial staff lived in the basement of the Heilbronn shooting range , a rococo building that had remained undamaged. In July 1947, typesetting and printing were able to move to the club's printing plant (at the current location of the shopping center ) on the avenue in downtown Heilbronn, the former printing plant of the Heilbronn SPD newspaper Neckar-Echo . In the following year, the editorial team and administration also moved there. After the Neckar-Echo was also printed again in the club's print shop from 1949 , the Heilbronner Voice company moved into the printing and publishing building on Synagogengasse in 1950, which was expanded in 1957 to include the voice high-rise building on Allee 2. The printing house on Synagogengasse had a 30-meter-long glass facade, which made it possible for passers-by to watch newspaper printing with rotary presses . After acquiring the first typesetting calculator in 1971, Heilbronner Voice became the third German daily newspaper to switch its production completely from metal typesetting to photo typesetting in June 1975 . Since there was no longer enough space for the print shop on the avenue, a new building inaugurated on September 29, 1995 was built in the Heilbronn industrial area from 1993–1995, and the print shop and dispatch department moved.

Since the end of 1946 the Heilbronner Voice has also appeared in the Hohenlohe District, from 1947 under the title Hohenloher Zeitung . After the license requirement was lifted in 1949, two competing newspapers appeared in Heilbronn: from March the Heilbronner Abendpost , a side edition of the Fränkische Nachrichten from Tauberbischofsheim , which was discontinued in the same year, and from July 30th the Neckar-Echo , an SPD newspaper, which had existed from 1908 until it was banned in 1933. The SPD sheet reached a circulation of 32,000 copies and lasted 18 years, but was discontinued on July 1, 1967 for cost reasons. Since then the Heilbronner Voice has been the only local daily newspaper .

There were also competing newspapers in the districts of Heilbronn and Hohenlohekreis, but they gradually gave up, were bought up by Heilbronn's voice and integrated into their own local editions. This fate overtook the Kocher- and Jagstbote from Künzelsau in 1955, the Unterländer Volkszeitung from Neckarsulm in 1967, the Neckar-Rundschau from Lauffen am Neckar in 1968 and the Eppinger Zeitung from Eppingen in 1972. The Eppinger Zeitung was under this title for decades as the local edition of the Heilbronner Voice continued. From February 17, 2001 it was merged with the previous edition NW, Northwest to form the new Kraichgau Voice .

Today the Heilbronn voice only has competition from other newspapers on the fringes of its distribution area. B. in the northwest of the Heilbronn district by the Rhein-Neckar-Zeitung . In 1998/99 the Freiburger Zeitung am Sonntag wanted to bring a Heilbronner edition of its Sunday newspaper, which was distributed free of charge, to the market in cooperation with the Heilbronner advertising paper Neckar-Express, which was then published weekly on Wednesdays . The Heilbronner Voice publishing house then published its own advertising paper called echo through a subsidiary (Delta Medien Service GmbH & Co. KG) , which has been published on Wednesdays and Sundays since September 20, 1998 ( echo on Wednesday and echo on Sunday ) and free of charge is distributed. The Heilbronn edition of the newspaper on Sunday appeared shortly afterwards, but was discontinued a few months later. The Neckar Express itself was discontinued in March 2011. In October 2015 was made echo on Sunday the echo at the weekend , which is distributed on Saturdays.

Old logo from Stimme.de, now replaced by another

In addition to the daily newspapers and echo , the Heilbronner Voice publishing house also restarted a number of monthly or weekly (Neckarsulm) so-called local gazettes for individual towns (or districts) and areas such as Böckingen , Neckarsulm, Bad Friedrichshall, the Zabergäu , the Altkreis Öhringen and the Altkreis Künzelsau. On November 25, 1987, the publishing house started together with other newspaper publishers from the Franconian region , the Heilbronn Chamber of Commerce and the Heilbronn Chamber of Crafts, Radio Regional , Heilbronn's first private radio station, which later became part of Radio Ton . In 1997, the Heilbronner Voice website , Stimme.de , was launched, followed in 1999 by the establishment of the web agency Stimme.net , and in 2001 by the private mail service provider RegioMail . Since March 2007 news videos have been offered on the Internet as Voicetv . At the end of 2014, the editorial offices in Eppingen and Künzelsau were closed and the editors who had previously worked there moved to Heilbronn and Öhringen.

Editor-in-chief of Heilbronner Demokratie


The Heilbronner Voice publishing house is also involved in various other media companies, including

  • WMV Werbung Marketing & Verlag GmbH & Co. KG, publisher of the Bretten Week in Bretten
  • Delta Medien Service GmbH, publisher of the free weekly advertising papers echo on Wednesday and echo on the weekend
  • pVS - pro Verlag und Service GmbH & Co. KG, publisher of the monthly publications Der Gemeinderat and proMagazin .
  • Radio TON-Regional Hörfunk GmbH & Co. KG and Lokalradio Ostwürttemberg GmbH & Co. KG, operators of the private local radio station Radio Ton
  • Staatsanzeiger für Baden-Württemberg GmbH, publisher of the weekly newspaper of the same name, Staatsanzeiger für Baden-Württemberg
  • Südwestdeutsche Medien Holding as part of the Württemberg publishers group

Druck & Medien Heilbronn GmbH, together with the newspaper publishers Badisches Pressehaus GmbH & Co. KG (including Badische Zeitung ) and Verlagsgruppe Rhein Main GmbH & Co. KG (including Allgemeine Zeitung, Mainz), hold shares in the venture capital company media + more venture Beteiligungs GmbH & Co. KG based in Heilbronn; the consortium has invested in the High-Tech Gründerfonds II.


  • Uwe Jacobi : 250 years of Heilbronn press. History of the media in the Unterland and Hohenlohe 1744–1994 . Verlag Heilbronner Voice, Heilbronn am Neckar 1993, ISBN 3-921923-11-5 ( Heilbronner Voice: book series . Volume 5)
  • Uwe Jacobi: The voice of the region. Heilbronn Voice Today, a journey through 60 years of Heilbronn Voice, press history 1744–1945 in the Unterland, Hohenlohe and Kraichgau . Verlag Heilbronner Voice, Heilbronn 2006, ISBN 3-921923-24-7

Web links

Commons : Heilbronner Voice  - collection of images, videos and audio files

Coordinates: 49 ° 8 ′ 23 "  N , 9 ° 13 ′ 18.1"  E

Individual evidence

  1. Media data No. 68 of the Heilbronner Voice (PDF; 5 MB)
  2. according to IVW ( details on ivw.eu )
  3. Heilbronner Voice media data, valid from October 1, 2017. In: Stimme.de. Heilbronn Voice, accessed on October 25, 2017 .
  4. according to IVW ( online )
  5. according to IVW , second quarter 2020, Mon-Sat ( details and quarterly comparison on ivw.eu )
  6. according to IVW , fourth quarter in each case ( details on ivw.eu )
  7. More topicality in the local area . Stimme.de , October 31, 2014
  8. HZ editorial office closed soon? After seven decades of tradition and success in Künzelsau . kuenzelsau.de, October 23, 2014
  9. "A company that has positioned itself well for the future" . In: State Gazette for Baden-Württemberg 27/2012 ( online ( memento from March 4, 2016 in the Internet Archive ))