Future of 'Irish Daily Star' secured as INM takes the reins
Published 11/01/2013 | 05:00
THE future of the 'Irish Daily Star' has been secured after it was revealed that Independent News & Media (INM) will take full executive control of the newspaper.
Staff at the 'Star' were also assured that the new agreement between INM and Northern & Shell meant that there was no danger of a UK 'Daily Star' being introduced to the Irish market.
In a statement, the newspaper's parent company, Independent Star Limited, said INM and Northern & Shell, which each control the business 50:50, had agreed that INM will assume full executive responsibility for the 'Irish Daily Star', which will relocate from Dundrum to INM's head office in Talbot Street, Dublin 1.
Gerry Lennon has been appointed managing director of Independent Star Limited in addition to his existing role as managing director of the 'Sunday World', while Gerard Colleran will return as editor of the 'Irish Daily Star'. These changes will occur with immediate effect, while the planned office relocation will occur on a "phased basis by mid-year".
Mr Colleran was previously the editor of the 'Irish Daily Star' from 1999 until November 2011, when he became the company's managing director.
Northern & Shell had threatened to pull out of the joint venture after the newspaper published pictures of Kate Middleton sunbathing topless last September.
The controversy eventually led to then editor Michael O'Kane leaving the newspaper.
"This is a very positive development for the future of the 'Irish Daily Star', but it is predicated on a wide-ranging reorganisation designed to deliver efficiencies and cost savings," said the company.
"These include: pay cuts for all staff, office relocation and associated overhead savings. It is envisaged that up to nine redundancies will come about from the first phase of its restructuring, which will affect its circulation and advertising departments."
It is understood the pay cuts have been set at 5pc for the first €50,000 and 7.5pc for any balance above that level. Under INM's management, Independent Star Limited will remain as a stand-alone entity, with a separate board and identity.