Associated Newspapers has poached Jackie Newcombe, the managing director of the contract publishing specialist Premier, to head its own contract publishing division.
Newcombe will take up her role as the managing director of Unique Solutions in Publishing on 6 November, filling the management gap left by Simon Barnes' shock departure at the end of May.
Barnes' departure, after 20 years at Associated, had followed a slow start for USP. The division had landed only one major contract, for a London Symphony Orchestra publication, in its first year. However, winning the contract for an Avon magazine earlier this summer will give Newcombe a stronger platform from which to expand.
Newcombe said: 'We will have to recruit more people if we want to expand, but there are some very talented people there already. I hope to be able to add to them.'
She will report to The Mail on Sunday's managing director, Mike Ironside, who has overseen USP since Barnes' departure. 'We want to capitalise on our contacts within the company and reporting to Mike will help ensure that happens,' she added.
Newcombe spent nine years at IPC before joining Premier last year. She leaves behind the publisher's impressive portfolio that includes BA's inflight magazine, High Life.