ABCs show Evening Standard relaunch vital

The Evening Standard has seen its position weaken even further ahead of its relaunch next week, according to latest ABC figures.

The newspaper, now owned by Russian oligarch Alexander Lebedev, will relaunch on Monday (May 11) under the title London Evening Standard. It has just run a campaign saying “Sorry” for losing touch with its London readers.

However, its average net circulation for April shows a 6.11% drop on March to 263,312 and the title is down 1.01% for the six months November to April, year-on-year. Of the circulation total about a third were given out as “bulks” in April. The title has been under new editor Geordie Grieg’s leadership since the beginning of March.

The latest ABCs show the national tabloids dropping an accumulated 3.96% for the six months November to April 2009 year-on-year. News International’s The Sun fell below 3 million again after clambering back above the psychologically and commercially important figure in March. Circulation dropped 3.6% on March to 2,957,690. The title is down 2.71% for the six month period. The Daily Mirror also fell 1.46% month-on-month to 1,320,629 and is down 9.85% for the six months year-on-year.

The Daily Star saw a slight rise of 0.34% to 822,846 as it holds to its low cover price.

The mid-market dropped 4.53% for the six months year-on-year but the Daily Mail rose 1.8% month-on-month to 2,201,459. The Daily Express dipped very slightly month-on-month.

The Quality market saw the biggest aggregated drop, falling 5.3% for the six month period year-on-year. Surprisingly, the troubled Independent held steady in April, only down 0.43% on March to 204,429. However, it fell 15.4% year-on-year.

All titles in the sector except The Guardian, which rose 0.68%, saw circulation fall in March. The Financial Times dropped 2.51% to 421,059. The Daily Telegraph, which has just launched a brand campaign, dropped 0.87% to 817,692, down 5.55% year-on-year, while The Times dropped 1.57% month-on-month to 590,765, down 2.7% year-on-year.

In the Sunday market the tabloids saw steep falls for the six months year-on-year with The People, now about to reposition, down 11.82%. The News of The World fell below 3 million for the first time this year in April to a circulation of 2,936,239.

All Quality Sunday title saw a dip with the Independent on Sunday down 21.82% for the six month period year-on-year.

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