Tuesday, 29 November 2011

Desmond gets his figures wrong

As Richard Desmond unveiled his new printing plant in Luton yesterday, he was asked by the Press Gazette:

why he was making the investment at a time when print newspaper circulations in general are declining.

He replied:

“My newspapers haven’t declined over the last 11 years. The Daily Star was selling 400,000 when we bought it, it now sells around 800,000. Eleven years ago there wasn’t a Daily Star Sunday, it now sells more than 800,000 every Sunday. The Daily Express and Sunday Express are in line with the market.”

He is right that sales of the Star haven't declined overall. But only just - and his figures are completely wrong.

The Daily Star was actually selling 627,317 in November 2000, when he bought it.

Not 400,000.

Based on the October 2011 ABCs, it now sells 658,690 copies per day.

Not 800,000.

The Daily Star Sunday doesn't sell 800,000 every Sunday either.

The figure, from the October ABCs is 688,058. It has benefitted a lot from the closure of the News of the World as back in June it was selling only 305,978 copies every Sunday. 

And the Daily Express? When Desmond acquired it, it had a daily circulation of 985,523.

The October 2011 ABCs show a daily circulation of 614,534.

A decline of 370,989 copies per day.

So he wasn't correct to say there has been no decline over the last 11 years. But at least he didn't repeat the claim he made in June when he said sales of the Express had 'increased dramatically'.


  1. As well as losing readers the cover price of the Star and Express have been cut dramatically so presumably revenues have been slashed as well.

  2. I know I shouldn't hope for people to lose work but I would very much like the Daily Express to go away.

  3. If the express dies a rightful death then whatever few real and professional journalists work there will move on to better things. The others will rightfully fade into obscurity and the world.of journalism will be a better place.


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