‘Financial Times’ to Launch Middle East Edition on Tuesday

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By: Joe Strupp

The Financial Times will launch a new edition for Middle East readers, with the first full version available on Tuesday.

“The timing of the launch coincides with reader and advertiser demand for global business news in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Middle East and the emergence of the Gulf region as a major international finance and business centre,” the FT stated in a release. “The launch is consistent with the Financial Times? global expansion strategy and complements existing operations in the Gulf region. The Financial Times now has dedicated editions for the UK, Continental Europe, Asia, US and the Middle East and is printed in 24 cities across the world. The Financial Times has been printed in Dubai since 2003 and this will remain unchanged.”

The Financial Times? regional editorial and commercial teams will be based in UAE?s capital, Abu Dhabi. Roula Khalaf, Middle East Editor in London, will manage a team of three full time journalists in Abu Dhabi, including Andrew England, Middle East Correspondent, and James Drummond, Gulf News Editor. Simeon Kerr, Gulf Business Correspondent, will be based in Dubai, complementing a network of further FT offices in Cairo, Tehran, Jerusalem and Beirut. Stringer journalists will be recruited in Qatar and Saudi Arabia.

?We have identified a strong and growing demand for high quality, global independent news and analysis across the Gulf region,” Lionel Barber, editor of the Financial Times, said in a statement. “This demand reflects how the Gulf has quickly become a financial and business powerhouse and our new edition will cement the region?s place in the global economy.?

John Ridding, CEO of the Financial Times, added: ?This edition is a further step in our successful global strategy, reflecting the rapidly deepening interface between the region and the international economy. It will provide a further boost to our global circulation and provide a quality advertising vehicle for businesses seeking to reach senior decision makers in the Middle East.?

The paper plans to launch ad support for the launch through an airport poster campaign using high profile sites at Abu Dhabi and Dubai airports, along with a television campaign to start in May on Al Jazeera and regional business channels.

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