Abu Dhabi Media’s daily newspaper The National is to launch a revised print and online product following a six-month internal review.
Starting 3 May, the changes include the closure of its weekly M magazine and the launch of Luxury – a new monthly supplement focused on lifestyle. The new title will be edited by Helen McLaughlin and overseen by features editor, Maureen Gannon. Arts & Life will become a 16-page tabloid and will feature more listings and events, while its Ultratravel title will alter its publishing cycle from quarterly to monthly.
Other noteworthy revisions to the print edition include a bid to garner more readers from the South Asian demographic with a new India-focused page, sponsored by The Times of India in the foreign pages of the main A-section. The sports section layout has also been revamped and redesigned to give it more pep and visual impact.
As for new digital products, these include an SMS news alert service available for Etisalat subscribers and the introduction of a new e-Reader for iPage.
Hassan Fattah, editor-in-chief of The National, said the changes reflect a lot of focus group, market research and readership surveys. “We wanted to understand who our readers are, what our readers like, what they don’t like and how do we stay relevant in their world, how we can continue to reach them and continue to grow. After four years, it was time to breathe in some new life and freshen things up as well.”
In March Abu Dhabi Media replaced its CEO Malcolm Wall after only six months in the job. The news followed the earlier decision to change the company’s focus and put public service media at the heart of its entire operation.