The decision by the fledgling Dublin Daily to switch from mornings to evenings has raised the prospect of a circulation battle with the more established Evening Herald.
The Herald sells heavily in the capital and has sales in provincial centres.
Dublin Daily managing director Colm Grealy said the move had been prompted by market research. He added that the “the format and content of the paper have met with a very positive response from city readers”. But their preference was for later editions on the news-stands “at times that suit their lifestyle”.
The paper will now hit the news-stands in the early afternoon five days a week.
Editor Liam Hayes said that launching an evening edition had always been in their plans. But it had always been recognised that breaking the monopoly of Independent News and Media’s evening title would be an exceptionally tough task.
A media analyst commented : “They will have a battle ahead. The Herald is so strong that it is almost bought out of habit – and it is a habit that will be very hard to break.” The David versus Goliath aspect of the competition is exemplified by their respective circulations. The Herald has a daily circulation of more than 104,000 copies while it is reported that the Dublin Daily has still to reach its launch target of 25,000.
No change in the name of the paper is anticipated.
Dublin Daily launched on 11 March with £1m backing from Archant, the first investment outside the UK by the company. Archant is the single largest shareholder in the venture with a 20 per cent stake.
By Des Cryan in Dublin