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January 7, 2014

Liverpool Echo launching print Sunday edition

By Dominic Ponsford

Trinity Mirror has announced plans to launch a new Sunday print edition of the Liverpool Echo with the first edition coming out on 19 January.

The move comes after the company closed the weekly Liverpool Post newspaper last month, two years after taking it from daily to weekly distribution.

No journalists lost their jobs as a result of that move and it is believed that the new title will be produced out of existing resources.

Sales of the Echo (Monday to Saturday) were down 7.5 per cent year on year in the first six months of last year, standing at average of 74,984 – making it the UK's second best selling regional daily newspaper – after the Express and Star in Wolverhampton.

Last May the Echo launched a new geographical edition for the Wirral with two new reporters.

Trinity Mirror said the Sunday launch follows "months of planning and research" and that it will "strengthen the brand’s online publishing by creating a flow of content across the weekend that will further fuel audience growth on the Echo’s thriving desktop, mobile and social media platforms".

Trinity Mirror managing director North West and Manchester Steve Anderson-Dixon said: "The Liverpool Echo is a strong and respected brand. It has a connection with its audience that is unparalleled across Merseyside.

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"We already have in place brilliant local journalists, an excellent local sales force and a well-established readership which we believe will welcome the Echo seven days a week.  This is a brave, energetic and, in my view, brilliant opportunity for the Echo to further extend its publishing footprint and we see this investment as a ringing endorsement of the Echo, the city of Liverpool, and its people.

"It is a wonderful feeling to be launching a print product in the knowledge that doing so will provide more momentum to our websites and our determination to be a world-class digital publisher.’

Echo editor Ali Machray said: ‘We can’t wait for January 19. The fact that we can do this is testimony to what an amazing city Liverpool is. Its news and sports potential are astounding and we’re determined to give its people a Sunday Echo they can savour."

The press statement said: "The Sunday Echo’s key components will be news and sport and it will fight for its readers and its city in the true tradition of the brand.

"There will be a strong focus on high-quality coverage of Liverpool and Everton football clubs and in meeting the demand for minute-by-minute football information from the passionate support base of the two clubs.

"The Sunday Echo will be priced at just 50p and the dummies produced have researched well with readers and offer advertisers an exciting new opportunity."

Trinity Mirror chief executive Simon Fox, said: “This is an exciting opportunity for the group. Strengthening our weekend operation in Liverpool will both help us to enhance our seven-day digital news coverage and bring an innovative new Sunday newspaper to market."

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