Rumors that Rupert Murdoch would close News Corp’s iPad only paper, The Daily, have come to fruition. According to a press release Monday, the paper will close in mid-December and be folded in to other News Corp publications:
As part of a digital restructuring initiative, the company will cease standalone publication of The Daily iPad app on December 15, 2012, though the brand will live on in other channels. Technology and other assets from The Daily, including some staff, will be folded into The Post.
Mr. Murdoch said: “From its launch, The Daily was a bold experiment in digital publishing and an amazing vehicle for innovation. Unfortunately, our experience was that we could not find a large enough audience quickly enough to convince us the business model was sustainable in the long-term. Therefore we will take the very best of what we have learned at The Daily and apply it to all our properties. Under the editorial leadership of Editor-in-Chief Col Allan and the business and digital leadership of Jesse, I know The New York Post will continue to grow and become stronger on the web, on mobile, and not least, the paper itself. I want to thank all of the journalists, digital and business professionals for the hard work they put into The Daily.”
The iPad publication was reportedly operating at around a $30 million per year in losses. The announcement comes alongside surprise news that Tom Mockridge, the CEO of Murdoch’s scandel-ridden U.K. newspaper arm, is resigning. Mockridge stepped in to replace Rebekah Brooks as News International’s CEO in July 2011 amidst a phone-hacking scandal, which prompted the closure of Murdoch’s News of the World tabloid. The News International scandal led to a year-long public inquiry – the Leveson Inquiry — into the culture and ethics of the British press. Robert Thomson, managing editor of the WSJ will reportedly replace Mockridge.