London Lite faces closure

Associated Newspapers is considering closing its evening freesheet London Lite.

The publisher says it is consulting on the future of the newspaper, a process “which may result in closure”.

It adds that it will also consult with the 36 London Lite employees before a final decision is made.

The announcement comes two weeks after The London Evening Standard, recently bought by Russian oligarch Alexander Lebedev, went free and a month after News International axed the Lite’s evening freesheet rival thelondonpaper.

Steve Auckland, managing director of Associated Newspapers’ free division, says developments in the “afternoon free newspaper space” dictated that “we look again at the future” of the paper.

“Despite reaching a large audience with an excellent editorial format, we are concerned about the commercial viability in this highly competitive area,” he adds.
The Evening Standard, which did have a cover price of 50 pence, went free from 12 October and 600,000 copies are currently being distributed daily.

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