Associated to boost Metro's circulation

Metro, the Associated Newspapers title, is to increase its London distribution by almost 50 per cent.

The newspaper has been discussing its plans for an increase with agencies for several months (Campaign, 16 February) and has now decided to raise its London circulation by 250,000 copies from September.

Metro's move will increase its average London circulation from 548,053 to close to 800,000. It hopes to achieve this by increasing the number of distribution points and by restocking bins more often.

The move could significantly raise the pressure on the afternoon freesheets, thelondonpaper and Metro's sister title London Lite.

The free papers are embroiled in a battle for ad revenues and this week it emerged that News International is offering clients special deals to advertise in thelondonpaper.

In February, Associated labelled NI as "totally irresponsible" for hiking the circulation of thelondonpaper by 100,000 to around 500,000 copies.