The Business, the financial weekly newspaper owned by the Barclay brothers, is negotiating a distribution deal with Newsquest Media to deliver 100,000 free copies direct to targeted London homes.
The deal with the regional press publisher, which has yet to be finalised, is intended to replace The Business’s distribution contract with the Mail on Sunday. This arrangement, which comes to an end on April 11, has seen the newspaper included with 141,000 copies of the MoS in London and the South-east.
A spokesman for The Business says that the decision to end the MoS arrangement was made before the recent posting of the Telegraph Group’s sale. However, both the Barclay brothers and MoS parent company Daily Mail & General Trust are bidding for the Telegraph Group.
By piggy-backing the MoS, The Business has been able to claim an average net circulation of 284,188 in February’s Audit Bureau of Circulations figures, of which only 28,093 were paid for at the full rate of 70p.
The deal with Newsquest’s distribution network would see The Business delivered to carefully chosen AB homeowner areas so as not to cannibalise news-stand sales. The newspaper is also looking for advertising clients to sponsor the home delivery.
The Business, formerly The Sunday Business, relaunched in January 2002 as a single-section newspaper. Advertising sales were handled by the Telegraph Group until last September, when they went in house.