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London Evening Standard Cuts Daily Paper for Weekly Publication to Stem Losses



London’s nearly 200-year-old Evening Standard newspaper plans to abandon its daily print publication, switching to a weekly edition, according to a memo sent to staff, following a tough period for free UK newspapers.

London Evening Standard Cuts Daily Paper for Weekly Publication to Stem Losses

The company blamed home working and widespread Wi-Fi on London trains for reduced readership and said it has to look for ways to stem unsustainable losses, according to an email to staff on Wednesday, which was seen by Bloomberg News. The memo didn’t map out job losses, and said it would go through a consultation period with staff. 

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A representative for the Evening Standard didn’t respond to a request for comment.

Read more: London’s Free Newspapers Battle to Survive After Covid 

The Evening Standard, handed out for free at bus and train stations across the city, was once a staple of the London commute. However, the pandemic meant more people worked from home and caused advertising income to plunge. Circulation fell to about 300,000 last year from more than 1 million on some days before lockdowns began.

The newspaper is led by editor Dylan Jones, who previously ran the British edition of GQ magazine. Former Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne also led the paper from 2017 to 2021, after he left the Conservative government following the Brexit vote in 2016.

The Evening Standard’s circulation had jumped after it turned free in 2009, under the new ownership of Russian-born tycoon Evgeny Lebedev and his oligarch father Alexander. Lebedev sold a 30% stake in the holding company that owns the Evening Standard in 2019 to Saudi investor Sultan Mohamed Abuljadayel.

However, in recent years, the publication has been reliant on funding from Lebedev, who is also the largest shareholder in another British news outlet, the online-only Independent. 

Other free publications have also suffered. The assets of City AM, a newspaper aimed at City of London workers, were bought last year by fitness and health business THG Plc in a rescue deal that prevented it from shutting.

This article was generated from an automated news agency feed without modifications to text.

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