Transat throws its support behind daily newspaper Le Devoir to set up the Fonds de journalisme international Transat – Le Devoir

Montreal, September 18, 2018 — Transat President and CEO Jean-Marc Eustache announced today an exceptional donation of $500,000 to the Le Devoir daily in order to help its journalists and readers discover the world.

At the initiative of Jean-Marc Eustache, Transat has decided to support Le Devoir, an independent newspaper, in the lasting development of its offering of international news. As part of an exclusive partnership, Transat will donate $100,000 a year for five years in the Fonds de journalisme international Transat – Le Devoir (Transat/Le Devoir international journalism fund).

“This support reflects our resolve to help people travel the globe and discover the world sustainably, and that belief has been a Transat value for over 30 years now,” explains Eustache. “In all of our endeavours, whether commercial or philanthropic, we are committed to supporting not only our own communities but also those of our destinations.”

The Fund will enable Le Devoir reporters and contributors to engage in foreign correspondence, an activity that gets short shrift from the media as a result of its high cost. The funds collected will be used to defray the fixed costs inherent in producing original, value-added international news, notably the travel, accommodation and logistical expenses incurred by reporters on the road abroad. Journalist’s salaries and commissions will continue to be assumed by Le Devoir.

Transat is keenly aware of Le Devoir’s social mission and its commitment to reliable, independent and high-quality information. “Transat’s donation will enable us to appreciably increase the scope of Le Devoir’s foreign coverage,” adds Devoir editor-in-chief Brian Myles, “for the greater benefit of its writers and readers. The Fund is neither a sponsorship nor an advertising investment. Naturally, the agreement that ties Transat to Le Devoir guarantees full editorial freedom and total independence as to the choice of topics and their treatment.”

At a time when media corporations are busy reinventing their business models to counter frenzied competition from giants of the digital economy, Transat’s magnanimous gesture is like a breath of fresh air. It attests to Le Devoir’s unique positioning in the media landscape and the profound attachment that a community of readers and philanthropists can have for its continued growth.  “The media are an essential bastion of democracy,” continues Eustache. “And I firmly believe that we have to do our utmost to preserve what little is left of our conventional press, because it is indeed threatened.”

Since 2015, 3,000 people have donated close to $1.5 million to Le Devoir or to Amis du Devoir (friends of the newspaper), a non-profit organization in support of the independent daily. “This feeling of commitment is a great source of pride for us,” affirms Miles. We’ve been getting donations of anywhere from 10 to 25,000 dollars. There are no ‘small’ gifts to Le Devoir, there are only tokens of appreciation.” On the other hand, the contribution from Mr. Eustache and Transat is in a separate class, a generous extension of the great families and institutions that have supported Le Devoir through the years.”

“For me, contributing to a fund that will enable Le Devoir journalists to report from foreign locations is key to helping our fellow citizens understand major international issues. I sincerely hope that this five-year agreement will enable Le Devoir to open some horizons for Quebecers and enable them to discover the world with the same passion we have at Transat,” concludes Eustache.

About Transat 

Transat A.T. Inc. is a leading integrated international tourism company specializing in holiday travel. Under the brand names Transat and Air Transat, it offers vacation packages, hotel stays and air travel to some 60 destinations in 26 countries in the Americas, Europe and the Middle East. Based in Montreal, the company has 5,000 employees. Transat is firmly committed to sustainable tourism development, as reflected in its multiple corporate responsibility initiatives since 2006, and was awarded Travelife Partner status in 2016.

About Le Devoir 

Le Devoir is a daily newspaper published from Mondays to Saturdays. In addition to its paper version, it is available online, on mobile applications and in tablet formats. Le Devoir was founded on January 10, 1910 by journalist and politician Henri Bourassa. In keeping with the founder’s wishes, Le Devoir remains totally independent as a medium and does not belong to any group.

Sources : Transat and Le Devoir

Information : Sabrina Duguay - NATIONAL Public Relations - sduguay@national.ca - C. 514-992-8898 / Alex-Sandra Thibault - NATIONAL Public Relations - athibault@national.ca - C. 514-262-6863

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