CAMPAIGN-I: NI to hand new-media control to newspapers

By GORDON MACMILLAN, campaignlive.co.uk, Friday, 26 May 2000 12:00AM

News International has radically restructured its operations to give its newspaper businesses direct control of their own new-media development and its digital arm, News Network, an incubator-style role within the company.

News International has radically restructured its operations to

give its newspaper businesses direct control of their own new-media

development and its digital arm, News Network, an incubator-style role

within the company.



News Media Group will handle all on- and offline development of The Sun

and the News of the World as well as FootballFC.com and Page3.com. The

Times Media Group adds responsibility for the online versions of The

Sunday Times and The Times to that of the print titles.



All four newspaper websites are undergoing major overhauls and are set

to be relaunched in early autumn. New features include video streaming

and WAP news services.



Susan Boster, the chief commerce and marketing officer at News Network,

said: ’The best way to get products to market quickly is to develop them

in a greenhouse and then integrate it with your business. This is what

we’re doing with the papers, giving them control of their sites.’



These developments leave News Network free to focus on the strategy and

direction of digital activity, including new investments and the

incubation and initial development of pure play internet projects within

News International itself.



Next month News Network launches its latest standalone internet

development - the recruitment website Revolver. The group is also

planning to launch a wireless group which will look into hand-held

devices and mobile development.



’News Network is a business accelerator and its role is to spot the

trends and provide the strategy,’ Boster said. ’A group of idea

generators will build businesses like Firedup and Revolver.’



Underpinning all of the businesses within News International is a new

customer focused division, NI Connect, to be headed by Chris Lloyd, who

was formerly the chief operating officer of News Network.



The unit will look at improving customer relationships online and over

the phone.



This article was first published on campaignlive.co.uk

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