NRC Handelsblad

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NRC Handelsblad
Newspaper lettering
description Supraregional evening newspaper
publishing company NRC Media
First edition 1st October 1970
Frequency of publication Every day
Sold edition Q1 / 2008: 204,572 (print), 6,453 (e-newspaper) copies
Editor-in-chief Peter Vandermeersch
Web link
NRC editorial office in Amsterdam

The NRC Handelsblad is a Dutch supraregional evening newspaper. It was created in 1970 from the merger of the Algemeen Handelsblad with the Nieuwe Rotterdamsche Courant . In the first quarter of 2008 the paid circulation of the newspaper was 204,572 (print) and 6,453 ( e-newspaper ) copies. Editor-in-chief has been Peter Vandermeersch since 2010 . The newspaper is a member of the journalistic research network European Investigative Collaboration (EIC).


The predecessor newspapers of the NRC Handelsblad were the Amsterdam newspaper Algemeen Handelsblad (founded in 1828 by JW van den Biesen) and the Rotterdam Nieuwe Rotterdamsche Courant (founded in 1844 by Henricus Nijgh). A collaboration between the two newspapers had existed since December 1964. Due to the increasing popularity of television and radio, both newspapers lost readers and advertisements, and there was an increase in paper and printing costs. For this reason, a merger of the two newspapers was finally considered more closely.

The merger plans met resistance from both editorial teams, each of which had set different priorities for itself. The Algemeen Handelsblad preferred to report on social and cultural developments, while the Nieuwe Rotterdamsche Courant focused on (inter) national politics and the economy. Ultimately, there was no escaping a merger, so the conception of the new newspaper was started. This should be based on foreign models such as The Times , The Guardian and Süddeutsche Zeitung and address an educated audience without large party or church ties. In the conception, ideas from the editorial team of Algemeen Handelsblad that had not yet been implemented were also reflected . Despite the intended target readership, it later turned out that the new newspaper also tended towards liberalism; as early as 1967, both forerunners had made a recommendation for the VVD . In addition, in the March 28, 1970 edition of Vrij Nederland , Joop van Tijn revealed that both newspapers had printed VVD election advertisements free of charge in the nine days before the parliamentary elections.

On October 1, 1970, the first issue of the new fusion newspaper appeared. The editorial office was in Rotterdam. In Amsterdam and the northern part of the Netherlands, the NRC Handelsblad was still called Handelsblad NRC until May 1972 . The development was initially still unfavorable as far as the circulation was concerned. Of the three editors-in-chief Jérôme Heldring (originally Nieuwe Rotterdamsche Courant ), Henk Hofland and André Spoor (originally Algemeen Handelsblad ), only the latter remained in 1972. In 1975, however, it was possible to turn things around, from then on the newspaper increased its circulation significantly and was able to establish itself as the prestigious paper in the Netherlands. In 1995, pioneering work was done with the first internet presence of a national Dutch daily newspaper. In the same year the publisher of the NRC Handelsblad Dagblad Unie, who also published the sister newspaper Algemeen Dagblad , was sold by its owner Reed Elsevier to PCM Uitgevers for 865 million guilders . With this, the NRC Handelsblad became part of a group that now had a monopoly over the national quality newspapers in the Netherlands.

When the parent publisher PCM Uitgevers was sold to the Belgian newspaper group De Persgroep in 2009 , the Dutch competition authority Nederlandse Mededingingsautoriteit only agreed on the condition that NRC Medien would be sold elsewhere. Buyers were the Dutch financial investor Egeria of C & A -Eigentümerfamilie Brenninkmeijer (80 percent) and the TV channel Het Gesprek (20 percent), which include inter alia the media entrepreneur Derk Sauer. Egeria now owns 91 percent, Sauer nine percent of the publishing house.

In November 1998 a magazine with the name "M" was created and since March 2000 it has been included in the first Saturday edition of the respective month. Like the other Dutch newspapers, the new competition in the form of the Internet and the free newspaper metro, which has been published since 1999, resulted in a loss of circulation.This development was countered in March 2006 with the offshoot , which, unlike the parent newspaper, is a morning newspaper and is popular Younger readers, who are no longer as willing to grab a daily newspaper as their predecessor generations, or prefer the newer free newspapers, turn to it. The editorial office has been in Amsterdam since December 2012.

In 2015, NRC was sold to the Belgian media group Mediahuis .


  • 1995 - In July, the NRC Handelsblad goes online as the first national daily newspaper in the Netherlands.
  • 2004 - The newspaper has also been published as an e-newspaper since November . The online area is divided into a freely accessible and paid area, with the latter allowing access to the newspaper archive.
  • 2005 - The online edition is supplemented with web feeds .

Previous editors-in-chief

André Spoor , Jérôme Heldring , Henk Hofland 1970-1972
André Spoor 1972-1983
Wout Woltz 1983-1990
Ben Knapen 1990-1996
Folkert Jensma 1996-2006
Birgit Donker 2006-2010
Peter Vandermeersch since 2010

Edition development

After the merger, the number of copies sold fell slightly from 106,121 in 1970 to 97,474 in 1975, but from then on it went steadily upwards, reaching a value of 270,950 in 1995. Since the turn of the millennium, the Dutch daily newspapers have had to deal with new competition such as the Internet and free newspapers ( metro and Sp! Ts started in 1999 ), the circulation has fallen significantly since then and is now (fourth quarter 2007) just over 200,000 copies. The acceptance of the e-newspaper edition is so far not nearly as high as that of the sister newspaper de Volkskrant .

Edition sold since the investigation by the "Oplage Instituut"
year 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007
Print 257,470 253.864 251.077 244,346 239,628 231,868 218.379 207,845
E-newspaper - - - - - 3,787 6,194 6.314

The NRC Handelsblad today

The NRC Handelsblad employs more than 200 editors, 20 of whom are responsible for and around a dozen for Internet editions and multimedia productions. With 24 foreign correspondents, the newspaper has the largest such network of correspondents in any Dutch newspaper. The target readership has always been the country's elite, the two sister newspapers de Volkskrant and Trouw also see themselves as quality newspapers , but are not so much geared towards a social class.

See also


  • Gijsbert van Es, Johan Hendrik Sampiemon & Laura Starink: Door onze redacteuren. NRC Handelsblad 1970-1995. Balans, Amsterdam 1995, ISBN 90-5018-312-3
  • Micha Kat: Lux, Libertas en Leugens. Het morele en journalistieke verval van NRC Handelsblad. Papers Tijger, Breda 2004, ISBN 90-6728-169-7 .
  • Jan van de Plasse: Kroniek van de Nederlandse dagblad- en opiniepers. Otto Cramwinckel Uitgever, Amsterdam 2005, ISBN 90-75727-77-1 (Dutch; earlier edition: Jan van de Plasse: Kroniek van de Nederlandse dagbladpers. Cramwinckel, Amsterdam 1999, ISBN 90-75727-25-9 ).
  • Ewoud Sanders, Koos Metselaar: Stijlboek NRC Handelsblad. Van Dale Lexicography et al., Utrecht et al. 2000, ISBN 90-6648-996-0 (This book is not about the NRC Handelsblad itself, but a guide on how to write good texts in the newspaper's house style).

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. a b Het Oplage Instituut (HOI) ( Dutch / partly English)
  2. ^ A b Peter Vandermeersch: NRC in Amsterdam., December 9, 2012, accessed January 13, 2014 (Dutch).
  3. Nederlandse Mededingingsautoriteit: De Persgroep likes onder voorwaarde meerderheidsbelang nemen in PCM. Press release of July 1, 2009, (accessed December 18, 2012) .
  4. ^ Jan Benjamin / Philip de Witt Wijnen: Egeria en Het Gesprek. NRC Handelsblad online, December 20, 2009 (accessed on December 19, 2012) ( Memento of the original from June 4, 2012 in the Internet Archive ) Info: The archive link has been inserted automatically and has not yet been checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. . @1@ 2Template: Webachiv / IABot /
  5. Frans Oremus: Joost Oranje: Limiting rendement NRC. Villamedia online, November 1, 2012. Accessed December 19, 2012 .