Thomson Reuters Corporation (NYSE:TRI) poached The Economist Group CEO Andrew Rashbass as its new head of news and media, the financial information giant announced on Wednesday.
Rashbass joins the company, famed for its news wire and data terminals, after 15 years at The Economist, where he has served as the publication group’s chief executive since 2008.
“I am excited to be joining Reuters with its unmatched commitment to reporting with speed, accuracy, integrity and independence,” Rashbass said in a statement. “As well as being, or in fact because they are, essential to Reuters journalism, these characteristics can also drive huge commercial success.”
He will join the company in the summer in the newly minted, London-based role of chief executive of Reuters. Stephen J. Adler, the president and editor-in-chief of the news wire, will report to Rashbass.
“We are delighted that someone of Andrew’s commercial and human qualities has chosen to join our senior team,” David Thomson, chairman of Thomson Reuters, said in a statement. “Our family’s commitment to news stretches back three generations. This key appointment underlines our passionate commitment to Reuters news.”
Indeed, Rashbass brings with him a legacy of profitability in a time of fast-sinking profits and faster-shrinking newsrooms in journalism, an industry that has been convulsed by the ongoing transition from print to electronic media.
Under his leadership, The Economist Group – which includes The Economist, The World In and Intelligent Life magazine – recorded record profits and circulation last year. The company earned about $101.3 million. And this was no easy task, given the flagship publication’s format.
The newsweekly has struggled in English-speaking markets for years. In 2009, the Atlantic, a monthly magazine, published a story entitled “The Newsweekly’s Last Stand,” in which it expounded on the struggles of Time and Newsweek – which ended its print edition nearly six months ago and was reported by Variety on Wednesday to be on Barry Diller’s chopping block – compared to the profitable Economist.
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