Johnston Press has announced a new three-year print and distribution deal with Trinity Mirror for the i and Scotsman newspapers as boss Ashley Highfield says news groups must look for ways to “work together”.
The agreement will see the i continue to be printed by Trinity Mirror, along with the Scotsman and Scotland on Sunday titles, until 2020.
Trinity Mirror have also agreed to extend a deal that makes use of Johnston Press printing facilities at Portsmouth and Sheffield to produce its regional titles (formerly Local World) over the same period.
Johnston Press chief executive Highfield said: “It is important, in this current media climate, to look for ways to work together to stabilise and strengthen relationships in the UK newspaper market.
“We are therefore delighted to confirm that we will be working with Trinity Mirror for a further three years, in a mutually supportive printing arrangement.
“The operational benefits are important and will be particularly helpful as we look to develop the Saturday issue of the i newspaper.”
Simon Fox, chief executive of Trinity Mirror, said: “I am delighted with the extension of the print contracts with Johnston Press, in particular the i, which we have printed since it was launched in 2010.”
A spokesperson said the new contracts contain improved terms for printing the i newspaper, including operational benefits and improved commercial terms.
Speaking to Press Gazette as Johnston Press disclosed its interim financial results last week, Highfield said: “I know a lot of people hanker after cottage industries but they are just not viable in this industry.
“Consolidation is a good for this industry and pretty necessary and pretty inevitable.”