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October 31, 2012

Northcliffe makes new MD appointments in Wales, Cornwall and Devon

By Andrew Pugh

Northcliffe Media has appointed two new managing directors for its operations in South West Wales and Cornwall and Devon.

Tony Dowling, the managing director of Real Radio Wales, joins the company as managing director of South West Wales Media, publisher of the South Wales Evening Post, Carmarthen Journal and Llanelli Star.

Mark Sainsbury, publisher of Newsquest West Wales, has been appointed MD of Cornwall and Devon Media, publisher of the Plymouth Herald, Torquay Herald Express and Exeter Express & Echo.  

Dowling takes over from Blanche Sainsbury, who was appointed MD of South West Media Group in July. 

Dowling began his career at Northcliffe in 1991 as a sales executive for both the Llanelli Star and the Evening Post, joining Swansea Sound as a sales executive six years later.

He joined Real Radio in 2001 as sales manager and was later promoted to sales director, then made MD in 2008.

In a release Northcliffe said he was “responsible for steering Real’s expansion into North and Mid Wales to become the only commercial national radio station in Wales and the country’s largest commercial radio station with almost 500,000 listeners every week”.

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He said: “I’m so excited to be coming home to work for one of the most respected voices in local media. I feel privileged to lead the team at this pivotal time and I’m looking forward to working with everyone at South West Wales Media.”

Dowling starts his new role in 2013.

Sainsbury takes over from Trevor Lee following his departure in September after 29 years at the company.

He too began his career at Northcliffe in newspaper sales at the Western Morning News and the Plymouth Evening Herald in 1991, and was promoted to newspaper sales director for the South West Media Group in November 2000.

In 2001 he joined Newsquest South West and after a series of senior management roles in newspaper sales and advertising moved to Wales, where he was promoted to publisher of West Wales in January 2011.

He commented: “I am delighted to be returning to the West Country to work with the team in Cornwall and Devon Media. The business has a portfolio of incredibly strong weekly titles and websites and I’m looking forward to working with everyone in the business to ensure we continue to produce great products for both readers and advertisers.”

He joins the company on the 3 December.

Northcliffe Media executive director said: “These are two great appointments for Northcliffe Media. Both Tony and Mark bring a huge amount of local media experience and I am sure they will both do a great job further developing our businesses in Wales and Cornwall.”

Both appointments come at an uncertain time for Northcliffe. Following months of speculation that the group was about to be sold by parent company Daily Mail & General Trust, on Monday it emerged that a joint venture was in talks to take it over.

Iliffe News and Media parent company Yattendon, Trinity Mirror, and former Trinity Mirror chief executive David Montgomery have partnered in a deal valuing the company at around £100m.

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