Associated Newspapers appoints new Metro MD

Associated Newspapers is shaking up its senior team at free newspaper Metro with the appointment of former marketer Linda Grant as managing director.

Metro

Current MD Steve Auckland is to take over the running of regional newspaper division Northcliffe.

Grant is currently in charge of commercial online projects at digital division A&N Media, overseeing projects such as MailLife and has the title director of commercial development. She is the former group marketing director at Associated Newspapers.

Metro is also on the hunt for its first chief marketing officer as head of marketing Abi Slater moves to DMGT to take a communications manager position. Assistant managing director Karen Wall is also now on maternity leave.

Metro has been extending its brand online, including social media activity and the development of apps. It is positioning as an entertainment leader has also been developing new commercial partnerships, for example its Venture Candy initiative.

Auckland has guided Associated Newspaper’s free newspaper division, which included the now defunct LondonLite, since 2003 and has seen the morning title move into profit.

He has a background in regional newspapers and is a former group assistant managing director of Regional Independent Media.

Regional newspaper groups have been struggling in the current commercial climate. Northcliffe reported profit down by 6% for the final quarter of 2010 to £59m.

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