Serbian pop superstar takes over Tanjug news agency

Serbian pop superstar takes over Tanjug news agency
Zeljko Joksimovic, music superstar from Serbia
By Eldar Dizdarevic in Sarajevo March 10, 2021

Belgrade-based company Tacno, owned by Serbian singer Zeljko Joksmovic, has taken over the services of Serbian news agency Tanjug, the Association of Journalists of Serbia (UNS) announced on March 10.

At the end of last year, Tacno paid for €628,000 for the right to use the property rights and trademarks of the Tanjug news agency for the next ten years. 

Its owner Joksimovic is a Serbian vocalist, composer, songwriter, multi-instrumentalist and producer. He has the status of a music superstar in Serbia and Bosnia, and is popular across the Southeast Europe region.

Joksimovic plays 12 different musical instruments including the accordion, piano, guitar and drums. He is multi-lingual, being fluent in Greek, English, Russian, Polish and French as well as his native Serbian. In the 2004 Eurovision Song Contest, Joksimovic won second place for Serbia and Montenegro. In 2006, Joksimovic composed the song Lejla, which was performed at the Eurovision Song Contest by singer Hari Mata Hari from Bosnia and Herzegovina.

According to the UNS, Tanjug and its services were deleted from the Business Registers Agency (APR) on March 9, and at the same time it was announced that six new services had been registered. Tanjug news service, Tanjug news service in English, Tanjug photo service, Tanjug video service, Tanjug livestream and Biz service Tanjug were entered in the Media Register since March 9, and their publisher is listed as Tacno.

The indications are there will be continuity at Tanjug, despite the change of publisher, as the same editors previously registered at Tanjug are the editors of the newly registered services. 

The Tanjug news agency was founded as the Telegraph Agency of the New Yugoslavia (TANJUG) on November 5, 1943 in Jajce, Bosnia & Herzegovina, and the first major professional task was to inform the domestic and world public about the second session of the Anti-Fascist Council of the People's Liberation of Yugoslavia (AVNOJ) on November 29, 1943, during World War II.

Today, Tanjug broadcasts on domestic and foreign policy, economy, society, culture and sports from Serbia and the world, has its own video, phono and photo service, cooperates with leading world agencies, and is a member of the Association of Balkan News Agencies (ABNA).

Back in 2015, Belgrade media reported that the Tanjug news agency had officially ceased to exist on October 31, when, in accordance with the legal deadline for the privatisation of state-owned media, it was deleted from the records of the Business Registers Agency. However, work at Tanjug continued as normal. 

At the time, the state secretary in the Ministry of Culture and Information, Sasa Mirkovic, rejected allegations that a new agency would start working within the Serbian government after Tanjug was shut down, emphasising that “private agencies Beta and FoNet are enough for the Serbian market”.