Guardian Newspapers is on the hunt for a commercial director to
head sales for a new internet business called Learn.co.uk.
Sophie Silocchi, PR manager for Guardian Newspapers, said: ’We are
advertising at the moment so an appointment should be imminent.’
In the meantime, the Guardian Unlimited team - overseen by head of
commercial development Steve Wing - is handling sales for the
educational site, which made its debut last week with GCSE-based
Publicity for the site is being restricted to ads in The Guardian while
content aimed at five- to 19-year-olds is developed. A bigger marketing
push is scheduled to coincide with the start of the academic year in
Learn is a joint venture between Guardian Newspapers and Educational
Interactive Solutions, a South African distance-learning company.
The site has ’sizeable’ backing and aims to generate revenue through
ads, sponsorship and e-commerce.
No major deals have been announced but Silocchi said the company would
be targeting advertisers such as Lloyds TSB, BT and Tesco.
The site will also carry all the job ads published in The Guardian’s
education supplement and on the Education Unlimited site.
Learn is billed as the first venture in Guardian Newspapers’ ’next phase
of online development’. Other new businesses are expected in the autumn,
including a website devoted to media.
The education site is promising to cover ’every dot and comma’ in the
national curriculum. It will soon post information on four core GCSE
subjects - English literature, English language, maths and science,
gradually adding more subjects throughout the year.
The site, which is aimed at schools and parents as well as children,
offers advice on how to study and test yourself, as well as containing a
’news and updates’ page.