Scotland business

Sunday Herald sees sales rise after backing independence

Sunday Herald Image copyright Other
Image caption The Sunday Herald's sales rose after it backed Scottish independence last year

The Sunday Herald was the only Scottish-based newspaper to see a boost to its print sales last year, according to new figures.

It was the only Scottish newspaper that backed independence in the run-up to the referendum in September.

It saw its print sales rise by 35% in the July to December period, compared with figures for the end of 2013.

The Glasgow-based newspaper reached 32,200 average weekly sales and pulled ahead of its rival, Scotland on Sunday.

The Edinburgh-based title reported print sales fall by 16% to 27,500.

That is the first time the Sunday Herald has been ahead in the 16 years since it launched.

The sales figures were released by the Audit Bureau of Circulations (ABC).

Average Scottish print sales
Sales (July to December 2014) Change from July to December 2013
The Courier 47,000 -7%
The Herald 37,000 -5%
Press and Journal 60,300 -5%
The Scotsman 26,300 -11%
Scottish Sun 235,000 -9%
Daily Record 197,900 -10%
Daily Express 53,700 -13%
Daily Mail 91,500 -4%
Daily Telegraph 17,000 -9%
The Guardian 9,700 -10%
The Times 18,800 +1%

The Sunday Herald's stablemate, The Herald, which recommended a No vote to its readers in the September referendum, saw average sales down 5% to 37,000.

Herald and Times Group managing director Tim Blott said: "Our news brand reach is growing overall with an increasing digital audience across our main titles and improving print circulation figures for The Sunday Herald.

"We're outperforming the market and our rivals because we understand our readers and provide news and content which is relevant, informative, insightful and entertaining".

The Scotsman, partner to Scotland on Sunday, was down 11% to 26,000.

However, both these daily titles reported daily online users were strongly up: the Herald by 39% to 96,400 and the Scotsman by 34% to 182,500.

Average Scottish Sunday newspaper sales
Sales (July to December 2014) Change from July to December 2013
Scotland on Sunday 27,500 -16%
Sunday Herald 32,200 +35%
Scottish Sun on Sunday 168,800 -11%
Sunday Mail 221,700 -12%
Sunday Mirror 16,600 -15%
Mail on Sunday 79,600 -7%
Sunday Express 26,700 -15%
Sunday Post 143,900 -11%
The Observer 13,100 -11%
Sunday Telegraph 15,000 -9%
Sunday Times 44,300 -3%

In September, the month of the referendum, the Scotsman's online figure rose to 240,000. Few other Scottish publishers report online readership.

The new entrant to the daily market, The National, was launched by the Herald stable in November. It takes a campaigning approach in favour of independence, and enjoyed an initial surge in sales.

Although not audited, managers say that sales figures have fallen below 20,000, but remain ahead of expectations.

DC Thomson-owned regional daily titles The Press and Journal and The Courier both saw print sales fall, by 5% and 7% respectively, between July and December.

Evening newspaper average sales
Sales (July to December 2014) Change from July to December 2013
Evening Express, Aberdeen 32,800 -8%
Evening News, Edinburgh 24,300 -12%
Evening Times, Glasgow 31,400 -12%
Evening Telegraph, Dundee 18,700 -8%

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