City AM Manchester & Edinburgh 2009
Free business paper City AM will launch in Manchester and Edinburgh in the spring of 2009. Total circulation outside London will be around 50,000.
In London circulation will be increased to 150,000 in the next years. In 2010/2011 the paper will therefor double its circulation from 104,000 now to 200,000.
Managing director Lawson Munchaster spoke at the 1st Free Paper Conference in Madrid today.
City AM celebrated its 3rd birthday on the 5th of September. In three years the paper reached beak-even and saw its readership in crease to 233,000 in Q2 2008, moving up from 100,000 at launch and 170,00 in 2007.
City AM targets a niche market of affluent readers, a major part working in the very limited area of the London City. One of the problems was the low reading time because the paper was handed out at the entrances of the subway station in the London City center, so readers could not read it on their journey. City AM adopted therefore a new distribution method whereby also readers in specific areas in London could pick up their copy before they entered the subway.
Since then, average reading time went up from 11 to 18 minutes. The new distribution method is ’self selective’ according to Munchaster: “people who are not interested in business simply don’t pick up the paper.”
City AM saw advertisng go up with 38% from January to August 2008, although the UK advertisng market in total saw a drop of more than 10%, growth is mostly in ‘local businesses’ according to Munchaster, although these consist of international brands as well, as these are all ‘local’ in the London city square mile.