Founded in 1971, Le Matin – formerly known as Le Matin du Sahara et du Maghreb – is the oldest French language newspaper in the kingdom. In 2016, it was distributed at an average of 20 000 per month, making it the most widely distributed French language newspaper in the country. However, when looking solely at the distribution through individual purchase, its numbers plummet to a monthly average of 8 828 for 2016.
Its creation came as the partisan press had great power and influence and the State had not invested the print business yet. At the time, the country’s official mouthpiece media was the only channel TVM. The regime thus decided to launch an affiliated press. However, instead of creating new outlets from scratch, the regime forced out a historic French media group - MAS, named after its founder Yves Mas - to take over its two outlets and associated print businesses: La Vigie, that was renamed Maroc Soir; and Le Petit Marocain, rebranded Le Matin. This take over was orchestrated by the King’s point man Moulay Ahmed Alaoui, who was the Palace’s spokesperson, and by former Minister of Information and former Commerce Secretary Ahmed Benkirane. The latter will be excluded from the directing body of the paper, leaving it all to Alaoui, whose tenure lasted twenty-two years. Alongside Le Matin, Alaoui will create As-Sahara Al-Maghribiya in Arabic (1989) and La Mañana in Spanish.
By maintaining the same editorial line, it has, over the years, built a name for itself as being the state’s unofficial media outlet. This is a potential explanation to the discrepancy seen in the sales numbers, as official state institutions receive a considerable share of copies printed out.
Media Companies / Groups
Le Matin is owned by the public company Maroc Soir
Yves Mas/Moulay Ahmed Alaoui
Affiliated Interests Founder
Yves Mas was the CEO of the French Mas media group Mas. I Moulay Ahmed Alaoui was King Hassan II's vizir and headed several ministries from 1981 to 1998.
Affiliated Interests Ceo
Mohamed Haitami is a former banker that was working at Attijariwafa bank, a subsidiary company of the royal holding group SNI.
Affiliated Interests Editor-In-Chief
17, Rue Othmane Ben Affane - 20.000 Casablanca, Morocco+212.522.48.91.00
Revenue (in Mill. $)
Operating Profit (in Mill. $)
Advertising (in % of total funding)
According to Moroccan law, media outlets are not required to disclose their financial information. However, their publishing companies are required to do so. I Audience share number was computed with the OJD data. I