Bratislava, Sept. 12, 2011 – Major Slovak media publishers are upping their content and services behind Piano’s pay-wall just four months after the launch of Piano Media’s subscription-based media content payment system. Publishers are gaining confidence in Piano’s system because of burgeoning subscription revenue and negligible drop-off in all-important advertising-sustaining page views and unique visits.

By placing more content and services behind Piano’s pay-wall, publishers want to generate greater revenue and increase the number of Slovak Internet users accessing the system. Thus far Piano’s publishers have seen a good response from Slovakia’s 2 million Internet users and are hopeful many more will sign up to the system with additional paid-content.

Currently nine Slovak publishers have more than 34 websites and services behind Piano’s pay-wall; after Sept. 12 that number will increase to 44. Slovakia’s most popular broadsheet, SME, for example, is adding front page personalization, a kindle-version of the newspaper and an early release of the paper in PDF format. Leading financial newspaper Hospodarske noviny will add their finance section and Slovakia’s oldest newspaper, Pravda, will put its health, money, living and career sections behind Piano’s pay-wall. Even with this added content, Piano’s subscribers will still pay only €2.90 per month or €29 for the year.

Publishers Pleased With Piano’s growth and simplicity

Chief Executive of Piano, Tomáš Bella, noted that Piano is showing steady subscription growth and “Publishers are adding new sections because they trust Piano will generate new earnings without loss of either advertising revenue or page views.”

Martin Čorej, SME’s director of electronic publishing, agreed with Bella, “Piano appears to be a good solution as confirmed by the results so far.” In the first quarter of cooperation with Piano, SME’s generated subscription revenue was comparable to earnings from one of its top ten online advertisers, yet SME puts only about five percent of its content behind Piano’s pay-wall.

Unlike SME, award-winning Slovak Newsweekly Týždeň has 70% of its content behind Piano’s pay-wall. Yet, editor Štefan Hríb likes Piano’s simplicity and believes Slovak media companies are doing better by cooperating rather than going it alone. Týždeň had an independent pay-wall up until Piano went into operation and he knows that independent solutions are simply much less effective.

About Piano Media

Piano is among the leaders in providing payment solutions to the media publishing industry. Its innovative platform allows publishers to put a variety of services and content behind a pay-wall and provides them with a secure group-payment system. With Piano, participating publications decide what content they place behind the pay-wall and Piano provides paid-content know-how to achieve optimum subscription revenue.

For a €2.90 flat-fee, Piano’s digital readers receive unlimited access to all participating publications, similar to cable-TV package distribution. Digital reader payments are split between publications according to where a digital reader enrolls in the Piano system, how much time is spent on each publisher’s sites and the type of content consumed. Piano’s success has drawn wide-ranging interest from publishers world-wide.