FT continues overseas expansion 25 years on

FT Magazine: Pope is the most influential European

As the Financial Times marked 25 years of publishing overseas editions this week, editor Andrew Gowers has said India, China and Eastern Europe could be the newspaper’s next growth areas.

He said: “There is lots to do and plenty of growth to be had in the US and continental Europe, especially in the light of EU enlargement to the east. I would love at some point to print farther east than we do now.”

Gowers added: “At the moment it’s not permitted to print foreign newspapers in India or China, but I wouldn’t be surprised if that didn’t change in the next couple of years because those markets are opening up.

“India has a great potential market for us because of the language and there’s a huge interest in business.”

Since launching a European edition printed in Frankfurt in 1979, the FT has more than doubled its sale and it is currently printed at 22 sites around the world. With newsrooms in New York and Hong Kong as well as London the paper’s 439,000, circulation is evenly split between the UK, continental Europe and the US. The Asia edition, launched in September, currently has a circulation of 30,000.

The 25th birthday of the European edition was marked with a 112-page edition of FTMagazine on the theme What Europe Means, which was circulated with the paper on Saturday.

The results of a poll of 40,000 readers included in the magazine said Pope John Paul II was the most influential European of the past quarter .

Gowers said: “This is a special anniversary for us. In the past 25 years, we’ve developed a domestic UK business newspaper into a truly global business news organisation, with four editions, covering the UK, Europe, the US and Asia, and the world’s leading business website in FT.com.”

According to the FT, the special edition magazine attracted 31 pages of advertising, worth more than £400,000.

Full interview with Gowers in next week’s Press Gazette.

By Dominic Ponsford

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