NEWS: Observer editor gets assurance of boost to marketing spend

The Observer’s new editor, Will Hutton, has secured an increase in the title’s marketing budget as a condition of him taking over at the ailing Sunday title.

The Observer’s new editor, Will Hutton, has secured an increase in the

title’s marketing budget as a condition of him taking over at the ailing

Sunday title.



The newspaper parted company with its editor, Andrew Jaspan, last

Friday, ending months of speculation. Jaspan gambled on an expensive

revamp in September, but sales have fallen by 4 per cent year on year in

the six months to February.



A spokeswoman for the Guardian Media Group, which publishes the

Observer, denied that Jaspan’s departure was an admission that the

revamp had failed. ‘The feeling was that Andrew had tremendous flair for

design, but there was uncertainty about his ability to give the paper a

proper heart and soul,’ she said.



However, insiders have been unhappy at the lack of investment put into

promoting the revamp by GMG’s owner, the Scott Trust.



The new appointment and financial assurance put an end to rumours that

the paper is up for sale, Hugo Young, the chairman of the trust, told

Observer staff on Friday. The Harrods chairman, Mohamed Al Fayed, made

two bids for the paper last month.



Hutton said: ‘It is my aim to accelerate the pace at which it recovers

its prestige.’



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