Russian oligarch to buy Evening Standard

Russian oligarch and former KGB agent Alexander Lebedev is reportedly close to buying the Evening Standard. He is expected to acquire the London evening paper for an undisclosed sum as soon as tomorrow (January 16).

It is believed that he would take a controlling 76% stake in the paper, while current owner Daily Mail and General Trust (DMGT) would retain 24%.

The latest Audit Bureau of Circulations figures revealed that in the six months to December, the Evening Standard rose 3.04% to 294,337. However, during December it fell 5.24% month-on-month.

The acquisition would see a controversial figure entering the UK publishing scene. In 2003, he ran against Moscow’s pro-Kremlin mayor Yuri Luzhkov, but was unsuccessful. He also has a stake in the Russian newspaper Novaya Gazeta.

Lebedev, who has an estimated wealth of about $1.5bn, has other business interests including a stake in Russia’s state airline Aeroflot and a luxury Italian hotel.

DMGT has declined to comment.

Latest from Marketing Week


Access Marketing Week’s wealth of insight, analysis and opinion that will help you do your job better.

Register and receive the best content from the only UK title 100% dedicated to serving marketers' needs.

We’ll ask you just a few questions about what you do and where you work. The more we know about our visitors, the better and more relevant content we can provide for them. And, yes, knowing our audience better helps us find commercial partners too. Don't worry, we won't share your information with other parties, unless you give us permission to do so.

Register now


Our award winning editorial team (PPA Digital Brand of the Year) ask the big questions about the biggest issues on everything from strategy through to execution to help you navigate the fast moving modern marketing landscape.


From the opportunities and challenges of emerging technology to the need for greater effectiveness, from the challenge of measurement to building a marketing team fit for the future, we are your guide.


Information, inspiration and advice from the marketing world and beyond that will help you develop as a marketer and as a leader.

Having problems?

Contact us on +44 (0)20 7292 3703 or email

If you are looking for our Jobs site, please click here