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Papers moving

Scotsman titles relocating to flexible offices

WeWork offices in George Street (pic: Terry Murden)

Edinburgh newspapers The Scotsman, Evening News and Scotland on Sunday are returning to the city centre as their current home in a west end suburb have become ‘anachronistic’.

JPIMedia, the owner of the titles, will be moving them to flexible office space operated by WeWork in George Street.

The three titles left the company’s purpose-built offices in Holyrood Road in 2014, taking two floors in Orchard Brae House, a mile out of the city close to Stewart’s Melville school.

There were complaints among some staff at the time that it was a mistake to move the papers out of the city centre, but leaving Barclay House represented a huge cost saving.

Five years later, after a series of cuts, the company squeezed the remaining staff into one floor of Orchard Brae House. Meanwhile the Holyrood Road building, which was opened under the ownership of the Barclays brothers and still bears their name, is now the headquarters of the games company Rockstar North.

Neil McIntosh, editor of The Scotsman, told staff on Friday that the current offices have been largely deserted since the Covid pandemic, with staff working from home, and had become “increasingly anachronistic”.

Rockstar North

Former offices in Holyrood Road (pic: Terry Murden)

A contract will be signed next week on the new offices which feature casual working space, with hot desks, catering facilities, and relaxation areas.

A spokeswoman said: “The goal was to find a more appropriate, flexible future-proofed office arrangement, back into the heart of the local community.”

Euan McGrory, editor of the Evening News, tweeted: “We’re excited by the move. It will be great to be right back in the heart of the city centre.”

Other tenants at the WeWork building include the tender management specialists AM Bid and the public relations firm Indigo PR.

Latest figures show The Scotsman continuing to hemorrhage sales. The average daily sale for January to July 2021 was 10,021, of which only 5,007 are over the counter purchases.

For the period July to December 2018 the paper was selling 16,349 copies.

The average sale of Scotland on Sunday in 2020 was 6,843 of which 4,766 were paid single copies.

The Evening News had an average daily sale in 2020 of 10,618 and had a higher proportion of over-the-counter sales (9,619).

Scotsman sales Jan-Jun 2021 (source: ABC)



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