Una década sin el fundador del Grupo PRISA, el editor de la Transición española | Compañías

Diez años de la muerte de Jesús de Polanco (1929-2007), considerado el editor de la Transición y uno de los empresarios más relevantes e influyentes de la España moderna.

Madrileño, aunque cántabro de corazón, de donde procedía su familia, sabía sacarle provecho a cada decisión que tomaba. Pero sobre todo, afirma la historiadora y exministra de Educación y Ciencia Mercedes Cabrera, autora de una biografía sobre el fundador del Grupo PRISA, editor de CincoDías, sabía sacarle partido a las oportunidades que se le presentaban y consolidar aquellos negocios en los que entraba.

Y en esto de crear empresas, Polanco fue precoz. Con tan solo 28 años, y siendo padre de tres de sus cuatro hijos, montó una empresa de distribución de libros con venta a crédito, que tres años más tarde se convierte en la editorial Santillana. Su juventud transcurrió en el barrio de Salamanca de Madrid, y ya desde pequeño se sintió atraído por la comunicación. “Hay papeles, pocos manuscritos por él, donde aparece esta vocación temprana, el interés por los libros, por los periódicos”, recuerda la autora de Jesús de Polanco. Capitán de empresas, editado por Galaxia Gutenberg, una obra que surgió en un almuerzo en Santillana del Mar (Cantabria), a propuesta del hijo mayor, Ignacio de Polanco, presidente ejecutivo de Timón y de la Fundación Santillana.

En la memoria de aquellos que le conocieron ­quedan momentos de gloria y también de grandes desvelos, como la guerra de los accionistas de El País o la batalla del fútbol y la de las plataformas de televisión. Pero, por encima de todo, permanece la imagen de un empresario a la antigua usanza, de los que creían en la austeridad y el esfuerzo.

“Soy un puro y simple empresario”, dijo de sí mismo en uno de los homenajes que le rindieron en México

El nombre de Jesús de Polanco permanecerá ligado al de la historia reciente, al de la Transición española y al de la modernización de los medios de comunicación, a raíz del lanzamiento en 1976 del diario El País, que en poco tiempo se convirtió en un diario de referencia.

Generó numerosas páginas de información, de controversias, luchas de poder, pero por encima de todo siempre tuvo un objetivo: ser el número uno en todo lo que se proponía. Ypara ello ponía empeño y recursos.

No le asustó ni la inmensidad del océano Atlántico. El 13 de enero de 1967 partió desde el puerto de Barcelona un barco, con bandera italiana, bautizado Donizetti, con destino a Valparaíso (Chile). En la bodega llevaba un cargamento de 180 toneladas de libros de texto destinados a la campaña de educación para adultos promovida por el presidente chileno Eduardo Frei. Detrás del envío se encontraba el empresario y su fiel socio, Francisco Pancho Pérez González, fallecido en 2010, artífices de Santillana, fundada en 1958. Jesús de Polanco tuvo claro desde el primer momento que se convertirían en líderes en el mundo de los libros educativos tanto en España como en América Latina.

Su amigo el jesuita José María Martín Patiño se refería a él, desde el cariño, como Jesús del Gran Poder. Y lo cierto es que le gustaba, más que amasar fortuna, tener poder e influencia sobre aquellos que tenían el mando. Lo recuerda su biógrafa, quien cuenta que guardaba en su archivo los carnés de afiliado a Falange y a Acción Católica: “Le interesaba el poder como capacidad para hacer cosas”.

De Polanco se ha escrito mucho, pero si hay una definición que resuma su figura fue la que dio él mismo, durante un homenaje de los editores españoles y latinoamericanos en la Feria de Guadalajara (México): “Soy un puro y simple empresario”.

Los hitos de un visionario

  • En 1958 fundó la Editorial Santillana, dedicada a la distribución de cuadernos de caligrafía y cartillas de alfabetización. En 1979 creó la Fundación Santillana.
  • En 1972 constituyó el grupo Timón, que hoy preside su hijo Ignacio Polanco, y un año más tarde se incorporó al grupo fundador del diario El País, que salió a los quioscos en 1976 y donde fue presidente.
  • En 1984 fundó la compañía Promotora de Informaciones Sociedad Anónima (PRISA). En 1985 incorporó al grupo la Sociedad Española de Radiodifusión (SER), que presidió desde 1993. También dio el salto a la televisión con Canal Plus, el germen de Sogecable.

Source link

This Middle Eastern life and eco anxiety – podcasts of the week | Television & radio

Hello from Turkey! Bet you weren’t expecting that. Turkey is my new favourite place. I’ve explored ancient history, discovered new cultures, seen my first ever pod of dolphins and found new podcasts. It’s truly an amazing place – you must visit immediately.

One of the countless joys of podcasting is that it’s international and portable. So just because I’m not at Guardian HQ it doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t be getting your weekly dose of new and exciting recommendations from your Guardian podcast queen.

Palma Cathedral in Mallorca



Palma Cathedral in Mallorca Photograph: Alamy Stock Photo

This week, I’m going to hand over to producer Max Sanderson to tell you about his favourite Guardian podcast from last week:


One of the joys of working in the rapidly expanding field of podcasting is seeing how it grows with each new podcast: the subjects covered, the stylistic approach and importantly, the audiences they hope to reach. That’s why this week, I’ve picked the Guardian Books podcast spinoff series, Travel folktales for kids.

The first family-oriented podcast I’ve come across (I’m sure there are many more out there), the series takes child-friendly folk tales from across the globe and creates a fully immersive audio experience. Using expert sound design and original music, the Guardian team behind the podcast breathe life into the stories of writer Paul Magrs, which are read wonderfully by Andrew Scott of BBC Sherlock fame.

The fourth instalment, The Dragon of Palma de Mallorca, reflects the moral of the terrifying tale: to never judge a dragon by its scales. Or in this case, to never judge a podcast by its target audience – it may be made for kids but it’s most certainly suitable for all ages.

Kerning Cultures



Kerning Cultures Photograph: Kerning Cultures podcast

Well, I couldn’t go to a Middle Eastern country and not listen to a Middle Eastern podcast, could I? To my shame, I cannot speak Arabic. In fact, I can’t speak any language apart from English and a little French (I must do better) but Ismat Abidi sent me the next best thing – Kerning Cultures.

First things first: can we address how great and clever that name is? As it states on their website:


Kerning is a process in typography: the sizing of spaces between letters in a font, so that the font can be easily read and aesthetically pleasing. We loved the metaphor of cultures kerning through our stories.

I think that’s one of the best podcast names I’ve found so far. Kerning Cultures tells stories from the Middle East that reflect the depth and richness it has to offer. The best way I can put it is that this is a This American Life for the Middle East. It’s that good. The podcast is made by Americans and the episodes are beautifully woven together, exploring the different aspects of Middle Eastern culture and the individuals that live there.

Simply put, for those of us in the west who are only shown the negative side of this enormous landmass, this is a refreshing take on the region.

Here is the beautiful review that Ismat sent me:


One of my favourite side-effects of Kerning Cultures is its aftertaste. The protagonists’ voices stick with you and the nature of their unique stories trigger afterthoughts weeks later, in a way that you’re compelled to share, with whoever will listen.

A traditional Afghan kitemaker in the US, a coffee entrepreneur in Yemen, a guitar-loving Kurdish refugee’s journey across Europe, an epic Beirut-Rotterdam love story against the backdrop of the Lebanon-Israel war. For the better part of two decades, the Middle East and its people’s stories have been overshadowed by headlines associated with violence and geopolitical tension. This podcast shifts the lamp, shining the spotlight on equally compelling stories; ones that are associated with community, instead of conflict. It has become easy to label the region with words like ‘dangerous’, ‘unstable’ and ‘conservative’. The stories in this podcast associate Arab culture with inspiration, entrepreneurship, art, pioneering and defiance. These stories break cultural barriers, question prejudices and realign perspectives about the region.

Word of mouth is powerful. Combine that with the medium of podcasts and the results can be far-reaching. Even if one person listens to an episode that sticks with them and they pass it on, the butterfly effect is a more open narrative, across the world, about Arabs and the Middle East. Through these conversations, cross-cultural bridges are built.

The team behind Kerning Cultures have the makings of a modern comic: a superhero team of e-humanitarians traveling, collecting, coordinating, editing and producing across Dunkirk, Dubai, Cairo, Bristol, Washington and Seattle – all in the name of a good story. Forget fake news, forget bad news, Kerning Cultures is good news, and we need more of it.

Terrestrial podcast



Terrestrial podcast – can we actually save the planet, or is it just complete doom and gloom?

I’m vegetarian and a wannabe vegan, I make sure that I spend my money as ethically as possible, I take public transport (because I will never ever cycle in London – that is madness), I turn off lights, I have shallow baths, I recycle, I pretty much never want to have children (sorry Mamma Slaney) – ie I care about the environment and the impact I make on it. But I am currently just over a week into a five-week round-the-world trip, which, so far, it must be said, is ruddy excellent. I’m very aware however that this is terrible for the environment. In fact, a big reason I decided to do it now rather than later was because many of the things I’m hoping to see probably won’t be around much longer. It feels very easy to fall into a pit of despair and woe at the state of climate change. And that’s something this podcasts tackles head-on.

Kristen Lepore emailed me to tell me about Terrestrial and it absolutely blew me away. Terrestrial explores the choices we make in a world we have changed. Host Ashley Ahearn, a motorcycle-riding reporter, travels the US to bring listeners stories about people making personal choices in the face of environmental change. It’s not about “peace and love, man” – though we do need that as always – but rather the practical and realistic changes people are making, to do their part in tackling climate change. In Ashley’s words: “I’m done being earnest. It’s time to rev the throttle.”

It’s a new podcast, wonderfully produced and brilliantly executed. The second episode is a particular favourite of mine. It’s about the problem with our death industries and the different ways that people are trying to deal with the vast numbers of toxin-filled bodies, sitting in virgin cut tree boxes, under our feet. It was utterly fascinating and you should all listen to it right now.

This is what Kristen had to say:


It’s hard to not feel overwhelmed when we hear depressing news about the environment and climate change. (That feeling has a name. It’s called eco anxiety, which she explains in the first episode.) Throughout the first season, Terrestrial takes on big environmental issues in a way that feels approachable.

In episode two, Ahearn introduces us to an architect who’s suggesting we compost our bodies after we die. She takes us to a research institute in North Carolina where a dead man is being laid to rest in a pile of mulch. It sounds creepy, but as the world gets more populated and we have less and less green space, this might very well be a quandary we face. Another episode discusses whether or not we should have kids, given the trajectory of our climate. Yeah, not the easiest questions to tackle. Yet it sure is thought provoking. Ahearn never tells us what to do. She explores these personal choices from multiple perspectives with thorough reporting, irreverent wit and a bit of self-deprecating humour. She admits she and her husband are considering having kids themselves and are totally torn.

What Ahearn is doing through this podcast is building a community of people who care about the environment and genuinely want to talk about everyday solutions. Her Facebook group is proof of that. There are already plans for a second season. So she’s got plenty of room to explore how screwed we are and what exactly we’re supposed to do next.

That’s it for this week. To get in touch with your recommendations, email podcasts@theguardian.com

Source link