Ousted Observer editor Jaspan joins Big Issue

Andrew Jaspan, sacked as editor of The Observer in March, is joining the weekly magazine for the homeless, The Big Issue.

Jaspan will take a managerial role at the magazine where John Bird is managing director and editor-in-chief. It is not yet clear, however, what title Jaspan will take.

Sources close to the operation say there are likely to be a number of new launches from The Big Issue publishing company in the coming months.

Jaspan joined The Observer from The Scotsman in January 1995, following the abrupt departure of Jonathan Fenby who edited the newspaper after its purchase by The Scott Trust in 1993.

Jaspan lasted just over a year before being sacked and replaced by Will Hutton, former assistant editor of The Guardian. Jaspan has pursued a war of words with The Scott Trust in various publications since his departure.

The Big Issue was launched in 1991 with seed money from The Body Shop Foundation and is sold by licensed vendors who are all homeless.

The vendors keep 35p of the 80p cover price, while the revenue from retail sales goes towards the cost of production.

The magazine sells 120,000 copies a week.

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