Media Lifeline: DMGT online

Daily Mail and General Trust is committed to making sure it comes off best in the digital land-grab.

2001: Daily Mail and General Trust has had its fingers burned in the dotcom crash, especially with the failure of Its post-crash strategy is to focus on classified advertising operations such as; and it steers away from the use of its flagship newspaper brands. Even its London portal flies the flag rather than using the Evening Standard brand.

2004: But as the second wave of the dotcom boom appears to build momentum, the company hedges its bets with the launch of, featuring content from both the Daily Mail and The Mail on Sunday. But the operation is still semi-detached, with its sales and editorial operations based in Charlotte Street in the West End, miles from Associated headquarters in Kensington.

February 2006: Associated underlines its new commitment to digital news media with the announcement that its free metropolitan commuter title, Metro, will now have a dedicated website. Paul Dacre, the editor-in-chief of Associated Newspapers, is now convinced that the newspaper groups that survive will be those that do best out of the new digital land-grab.

May 2006: DMGT merges Associated New Media, Associated New Ventures and Northcliffe Electronic Publishing to create Associated Northcliffe Digital, headed by Andy Hart (pictured). Journalists on the Daily Mail's website are integrated with the print journalists at Kensington.

June 2006: Hart now begins restructuring Associated Northcliffe Digital into a number of internal divisions. First to see the light of day are AN Digital Integrated Media, which is responsible for the digital channels of the group's newspaper brands; and AN Digital Publishing, responsible for existing and new assets in digital magazines, web services and new product development in areas such as online communities.

Fast forward ...

2007: Committed to taking the fight to the BBC - whose regional web activities are an attack on the likes of Northcliffe - Dacre (pictured) says that will become a full broadcast news portal, offering streamed video, downloads and mobile content.