Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 29°C

min temp: 17°C

ESTD 1874 Search

Johnston Press in advanced talks to buy national daily newspaper i

13:18 11 February 2016

Evgeny Lebedev.

Evgeny Lebedev.

Regional publisher Johnston Press confirmed it is in advanced talks to buy cut-price national daily newspaper i for around £24 million.

Johnston, which owns more than 200 titles including the Yorkshire Post and The Scotsman, said the deal would create the UK’s fourth largest print publisher with more than 600,000 paid copies a day.

The i newspaper is part of the group that publishes The Independent and Independent on Sunday, which is owned by Evgeny Lebedev, who has other media assets including the Evening Standard and local TV station London Live.

News of the “late stage” discussions comes after it was revealed the title had been put up for sale at the end of last year.

A sale of the i raises questions over the future of The Independent and Independent on Sunday, as it has been key in turning around the loss-making newspaper group.

The i was launched in October 2010 with a cover price of 20p, although it has since doubled to 40p.

It was billed at the time as the UK’s first quality daily newspaper to launch since 1986, when sister title The Independent hit the streets.

Its launch came less than a year after the Lebedev family, led by businessman Alexander and his publisher son Evgeny, bought The Independent from Irish publisher Independent News and Media for £1 in March 2010.

The i is said to have been a success for the Lebedevs, selling 275,000 copies a day.

It made underlying earnings of £5.2 million in the year to the end of September, according to Johnston.

Shares in Johnston rose 4% on news of the talks.

The group said there are opportunities to launch new online products associated with the i, target new markets and for advertising cross-selling.

Johnston added the i has growing circulation revenues - a feat in a declining wider print publishing market.

It is understood that Daily Mirror publisher Trinity Mirror was initially interested in buying the i, but is now said to be considering launching its own cut-price daily tabloid.

A deal to buy the i would be seen as a coup for Ashley Highfield, chief executive of Johnston, who recently cheered investors after cutting the group’s pension deficit.

Johnston has been under pressure recently as growing digital advertising revenues have struggled to offset declining circulation and print advertising.

Search hundreds of local jobs at Jobs24

0 comments

Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files
Comments

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other East Anglian Daily Times visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by East Anglian Daily Times staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique East Anglian Daily Times account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

Alex Pattenden, managing director of Unity Online.

Suffolk digital marketing company Unity Media Eastern has rebranded to become Unity Online, in a move designed to help it to meeting growing demand from the small and medium-sized enterprises (SME) sector.

A MRS grab at the Port of King's Lynn, similar to five which have been purchased by Associated British Ports for use at the Port of Ipswich.

Associated British Ports (ABP)has invested more than £160,000 in five new MRS cargo handling grabs for the Port of Ipswich, to help handle an increase in the trade of dry bulk materials.

The launch of the Suffolk Black Minority Ethnic Business Awards at the University of Suffolk, which will also host the awards ceremony in October.

The inaugural Suffolk BME Business Awards, recognising enterprise within the county’s black and minority ethnic communities, are now open for entries.

Melissa Abbott of Muntons who has been appointed national vice chairman of the Brewing, Food & Beverage Industry supplier’s' association (BFBi).

Melissa Abbott has been appointed national vice chairman of the Brewing, Food & Beverage Industry suppliers’ association (BFBi), the first time this role has been held by a woman.

Sydney Mini Market, Ipswich

Three establishments in Ipswich have been given one star food hygiene ratings after latest inspections.

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Most read

Most commented

Topic pages

Streetlife

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to the following newsletters:

MyDate24 MyPhotos24