Three decades of Manila Standard

From ownership to format, Manila Standard has undergone several changes throughout the years. Only one thing has remained – its dedication to serve the Filipino people by offering news that reflects the truth.

Manila Standard was born shortly after the Martial Law era ended, when Philippine media gained back its freedom and democratic rights through the ratification of the new Constitution.

As publisher and owner, the Elizalde Group formed the Standard Publications, Inc. The maiden issue of the newspaper was released on February 11, 1987 with Rod T. Reyes taking on the mantle of publisher.

Reyes was the former news editor of the Manila Times and former editor-in- chief of Manila Chronicle before Martial law. He later served as Press Secretary for the Estrada administration from 1998-1999.

Joining Reyes at the editorial desk were Alejandro del Rosario, Val Abelgas (managing editor), Chato Garcellano (Opinion editor), Rusty Otico (associate editor), Sammy Señoren (Business editor), Tony Siddayao (Sports editor), Nini Yarte (Features editor), Perry Solis (Foreign News editor). Lynette Villariba was assigned as Art Director while Caeserson “Sonny” Bismonte sat as editorial cartoonist.  The desk was joined by a number of reporters and photographers from the Daily Express and Tribune.

From broadsheet to tabloid

Manila Standard originally followed the broadsheet format until it adopted the tabloid-size on September 19, 1988. The newspaper then started garnering attention because of its size. Manila Standard became known for its convenient size as well as its content, providing serious content with the mindset of giving relevant and significant news to its readers.

More significantly, ownership of the paper changed hands from the Elizaldes to the Sorianos. In 1989, the Sorianos bought the company from the Elizalde group and renamed it Kagitingan Publications. Cipriano Roxas took over as the new executive director.

In June 1991, Alfonso Yuchengco came in as investor, paving the way for the creation of another company, Kamahalan Publishing Corporation, the new publisher of Manila Standard.

On February 11, 1993, Manila Standard added six centimeters in size to accommodate more news, photographs, features, and fearless commentaries. The tallman format was one of the many innovations expected to propel the newspaper and help it get ahead of the game in the print industry.

In 1997, as it entered its second decade, Manila Standard returned to its broadsheet format despite the perception that the bigger size is what made the newspaper unique from the others. That same year, Enrique Razon Jr. bought shares from the Yuchengcos and Jullie Yap Daza took over the reigns as editor-in- chief. In 2001, the Soriano group sold the company to the Razon group, giving the latter sole ownership of Kamahalan Publishing.

Manila Standard underwent another change with the merger of the newspaper with with Today, a newspaper published by New Day Publications and owned by then Makati Rep. Teodoro Locsin. At the time, the broadsheet changed its name to Manila Standard Today, helmed by Jojo Robles, who sat as editor-in- chief.

Green advocacy

Victor Agustin became chairman of the Editorial Board, at which time, the company became staunch advocates for the environment.

In 2010, the ownership of Manila Standard Today changed hands again. This time, Razon handed over the company to the Romualdez group. In 2015, the publication shifted to a visually-rich tallboy format that adopted interactive technologies. Manila Standard was re-launched and renamed The New Standard in November to reflect the changes in the print platform, both in lay-out and content delivery.

On February, The New Standard was formally launched and renamed The Standard. And on April 16th , Kamahalan Publishing Corporation was dissolved to become Philippine Manila Standard Publishing Inc.

However, the paper reverted to its broadsheet format on July 25, 2016, taking on its original name, Manila Standard, in the process.

Despite various changes over the years, Manila Standard vows to keep providing news that matter and to continuously seek ways to present reliable information to the public.

Topics: Manila Standard , 30th Anniversary , Three decades of Manila Standard
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