Press Day is celebrated today and we would like to take the opportunity by telling you about US. You may or may not read us every day, but you have certainly seen us around. Aruba Today and Bon Dia Aruba are ready for you six days a week, for 30 years already!
Both newspapers, Aruba Today and Bon Dia Aruba are part of Caribbean Speed Printers N.V. which is responsible for the production, printing and distribution. The company was incorporated on April 4th, 1990 by John A. Chemaly Sr. and specializes in newsprint publications with the latest in printing technology on its premises. Aruba Today, the only English and free newspaper on the island, has subscribed to the Associated Press (AP) and provides readers with the latest international news from the repertoire of AP writers and columnists. We also publish local news that is of interest to our visitors as well as our locals. Bon Dia Aruba is a Papiamento newspaper and has a trusted image.
31 years ago
It all started about 30 years ago with a small group consisting of Mr. J. Chemaly as the owner, Mr. Toko Winklaar as manager, Wendy Vrolijk for Aruba Today, Marijke Croes for Bon Dia in the sales department, Maritza and Harold Kroon for the editorial department. At that time there was another English newspaper, The News, but Aruba Today began as a free newspaper which was unique. Bon Dia Aruba also had a unique aspect as it was the first local newspaper in color. It was a big challenge to sell ads for starting newspapers, but the quality of both products and the fact that they are serious newspapers always was valued by the public. We were and still are consistent in quality and good news. That gains trust and attracts that kind of reader that goes behind gossip and sensation.
In that time articles were prepared on typing machines, only some employees had a computer. There was no cellular, only telephone and fax. The sales persons had to visit the clients over and over again. They had to take pictures of the products of the ad, go back to the office to prepare the ad, go back again to the client to approve, it was all day running. The newspaper lay out was actually constructed like a puzzle, by cutting the papers in columns and waxed together in pieces, every day over and over again. Those days most of the work was done manual.
Things have changes and now the editorial department works with PC’s, sound equipment and more modern technology. During the lockdown back in 2020, due to the Covid-19 pandemic, measures were taken which affected both newspapers. However Bon Dia Aruba managed to stay in circulation everyday till today with its 32 pages. Aruba Today was also still in circulation but with less pages. Just imagine a free newspaper depending completely on advertisement had to stay running depending on a handful of loyal customers which still believed in our product throughout those rough times, which we are very grateful to. Both newspapers were also very active on our social media platforms, interacting with our readers and followers. Providing information to those far from us but close at heart.
But one thing did not change: the heart of the company are its people. About 30 employees make sure that both newspapers are ready for you six days a week. The work is an ongoing 24-hour process of the department of administration, sales, editorial, lay-out, pre-press, press and distribution. The entire team strives every day to give you a good product in quality and reliable content. Working in the media is never a dull moment and it is a moving business. We would like to thank our extraordinary customers who believe in us and our loyal readers who give us the strength to continue through these hard times and who makes Bon Dia Aruba and Aruba Today still standing strong.