Metro France: “C’est trés trés dur”

metronews_france_2013Édouard Boccon-Gibod, director of the French edition of Metro, called the situation on the French advertising market “very very hard” according to an interview in Le Figaro.

Boccon-Gibod expects to reach break-even in 2014, after a reduction of losses this year. He said in Le Figaro that he is not aiming at increasing the circulation to one million, as both his competitors are doing.

In France, Metro is owned by commercial broadcaster TF1 since July 2011. It competes with 20 Minutes (Schibsted/Sofiouest) and the Direct Matin Plus free dailies from the Bolloré group (in cooperation with local publishers).

Metro distributes 727,000 copies in France, 430,000 in Paris. Circulation of 20 minutes is 965,000, with 500,000 copies in Paris. Direct Matin Plus has a total circulation of 890,000 with 540,000 in Paris (OJD, April 2013).

In terms of synergy, Metronews is now using more video and news from its parent TF1.

At the end of May, Metro France was rebranded as Metronews, according to the company to avoid confusion with the subway system and the wholesale company Metro. This last company has been suing Metro International for several year over the – in their eyes – illegal use of the Metro brand. The name change could be related to this legal action as well.

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