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Photo: Adam Berry/Getty Images

Al Jazeera is planning to launch a cross-platform business vertical called AJ Impact, executives tell Axios. It will feature original reporting from Al Jazeera journalists worldwide, as well as curated business content from Bloomberg.

Why it matters: To date, Al Jazeera has mostly focused on hard news topics, like politics, breaking news and current events. AJ Impact, which will focus on topics like personal finance, economic inequality, and impact investing, represents a significant departure from its traditional areas of focus.

Details: AJ Impact will have a standalone site, but it will also live across digital video, podcasts, social media and television.

  • The site will feature international business coverage and will be helmed by a team based in new offices in New York dedicated to AJ Impact, with bureaus in Kuala Lumpur, London and Doha.
  • The site will be led by Patricia Sabga, who currently serves as managing business editor at Al Jazeera Digital.
  • Sabga says the company has pulled together a team of 10 full-time staffers to launch the site, and that 20 are expected to be a part of this effort by the end of the year.
  • "The global economy is not just made up of high net worth individuals," Sabga says. "Everyone can have a voice in it."

Between the lines: The decision to launch the vertical was an editorial one, says Michael Weaver, senior VP of business development and growth at Al Jazeera, although there are obvious business benefits. "There's a white space we see in business coverage today," Weaver says. "A lot of our audience around the world feels like business coverage talks past them."

  • Al Jazeera is mostly funded by the Qatari government, but the company has begun to scale commercialization, mostly via advertising over the past year and a half.
  • Weaver says that part of the company's strategy in launching the vertical is to "enter the world of commercialization [advertising] so that the company can monetize its news independently."
  • "Softer content can be easier to monetize for us on platforms like Facebook and Google, and it's another portal for our audiences to grow. "

The big picture: It's part of a growing trend of news companies that are expanding their business and technology verticals in order to prepare for news demand after the world of Trump-dominated news headlines eventually dies down.

Go deeper

2 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Trump to issue at least 100 pardons and commutations before leaving office

Photo: Mandel Ngan/AFP via Getty Images

President Trump plans to issue at least 100 pardons and commutations on his final full day in office Tuesday, sources familiar with the matter told Axios.

Why it matters: This is a continuation of the president's controversial December spree that saw full pardons granted to more than two dozen people — including former Trump campaign chair Paul Manafort, longtime associate Roger Stone and Charles Kushner, the father of Trump's senior adviser and son-in-law, Jared Kushner.

  • The pardons set to be issued before Trump exits the White House will be a mix of criminal justice ones and pardons for people connected to the president, the sources said.
  • CNN first reported this news.

Go deeper: Convicts turn to D.C. fixers for Trump pardons

Schumer's m(aj)ority checklist

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer. Photo: Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images

Capitalizing on the Georgia runoffs, achieving a 50-50 Senate and launching an impeachment trial are weighty to-dos for getting Joe Biden's administration up and running on Day One.

What to watch: A blend of ceremonies, hearings and legal timelines will come into play on Tuesday and Wednesday so Chuck Schumer can actually claim the Senate majority and propel the new president's agenda.

The dark new reality in Congress

National Guard troops keep watch at security fencing. Photo: Kent Nishimura/Los Angeles Times via Getty Images

This is how bad things are for elected officials and others working in a post-insurrection Congress:

  • Rep. Norma Torres (D-Calif.) said she had a panic attack while grocery shopping back home.
  • Rep. Jim McGovern (D-Mass.) said police may also have to be at his constituent meetings.
  • Rep. Adam Kinzinger (R-Ill.) told a podcaster he brought a gun to his office on Capitol Hill on Jan. 6 because he anticipated trouble with the proceedings that day.