The Week is to launch its first editorial-led website, which will swallow online news magazine The First Post, Press Gazette can reveal.
The Week, a digest of the week’s media, launched in 1995, and is now owned by Dennis Publishing.
Its website, theweek.co.uk, is currently mainly for subscription information.
But, by the end of March, the website will merge with The First Post and carry all The Week’s editorial content – but to magazine subscribers only.
The First Post launched in 2005, and was bought by Dennis Publishing in January 2008.
Its website is already branded as ‘The First Post – brought to you by The Week”.
First Post describes itself as “a free and independent daily online news magazine – a place to find out what the news means, a place to read about the issues of the day in short, sharp, informative articles”.
In its latest ABCe figure, from January 2008, The First Post averaged 1,346,440 unique users a month.
The Week publisher Simon Davies told Press Gazette: ‘The Week is one of the most tremendous success stories in print in the past decade, probably.
‘We have been looking at our long-term web presence for a while. In the UK we don’t have an editorial-led website.
‘A year ago we bought The First Post as our online proposition, which is great, and has allowed us to do things we couldn’t do in print.
‘What has become clear is we can’t operate in print and online with two different brand names. What we have decided to do is re-badge it as theweek.co.uk.
‘It’s not gone through a redesign in many years, and we will redesign it so it has The Week branding.”
The First Post content will exist on the new website, Davies said, as will some First Post branding.
The new site will have The Week’s editorial content, and archived content, on a page-turning programme behind ‘a big red subscription-only button,’Davies said.
‘The main thing is it stops being called The First Post, and starts being called The Week,’he added.
‘The Week is quite hard to describe to people, and I’ve been here 11 years. We will be able to put it to a wider audience online.”
Davies said he did not envisage subscription fees to increase, as The Week already charges a ‘premium price’of £79.99 a year.
In the first half of 2008, The Week broke through the 150,000 sales mark for the first time in the UK – up 4.5 per cent year on year to 150,099