He will report to Camilla Rhodes, the chief executive of News Magazines, and will be responsible for leading the division's expansion through magazine launches.
Since its launch in 2005, News Magazines, the magazine arm of News International, has launched the women's weekly Love It! and the interiors title Insideout.
Whetton joins as News Magazines prepares to launch a celebrity-based women's title later in the year. It will be edited by the ex-Hello! editor and Reveal deputy editor, Maria Trkulja. There is also speculation that the division is planning to launch a men's weekly to rival IPC Media's Nuts and Emap's Zoo.
"I'm very proud to be joining the UK's most exciting new publishing business," Whetton said. "I'm looking forward to being part of such a dynamic organisation packed with bright talent, brilliant energy and big ideas."
Whetton left IPC in November last year after working at the publisher for two years. In his role as the managing director of the Southbank division, he oversaw 15 titles, including the relaunch of Marie Claire.
He started his career in advertising sales for Family Circle, later becoming the publishing director of IPC's country titles. In this role, he oversaw magazines including Country Life and Horse & Hound. He was also behind the acquisitions of The Field, The Shooting Times and Sporting Gun.
In 1998, he left the company and became the president of the global content management company OAG Worldwide, where he managed the sale of the business in 2001.
"Whetton is one of the magazine industry's most accomplished and respected figures," Rhodes said. "His outstanding experience will be an invaluable asset to News Magazines as we shape the future of our business."