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Sunday Business changes name
and cuts price

LONDON - Troubled financial newspaper Sunday Business is to be relaunched in January with a new name and a 50% cut in its £1 cover price, following its deal with news service, the Press Association, to ensure the paper's future.

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The paper will close for two weeks over Christmas and will be relaunched on January 6 as The Business, backed by a television, press and poster advertising campaign.

The paper is to lose its colour supplement and will instead be reduced from a three-section to a single-section 36-page newspaper, which will be available on newsstands on Sundays and Mondays.

The advertising campaign is to feature Christine Keeler, the 60s call girl who is best known for her role in the Profumo affair. The new campaign will carry the strapline, "More than just a business section".

The move follows the signing of the recent deal with PA to secure the future of the paper. The deal with PA will allow the paper to continue publishing, but comes at a price. As many as 12, mostly editorial, jobs will go and Sunday Business will outsource its production work to PA and move into its offices in Victoria. It will allow the company to make significant cost savings, despite the fact that it is getting no special discounts from PA.

The move will see the paper lose all but 10 of its reporters and, as a result, sees less emphasis on news and more on business comment and analysis. While the paper will not take business copy from PA, it will take national and other news from the service.

The paper will continue to be overseen by Andrew Neil as editor-in-chief and will be run on a day-to-day basis by executive editors Richard Northedge, currently Sunday Business deputy editor, and Iain Watson, formerly City editor of the Sunday Telegraph and business editor of The Scotsman.

This follows the departure two weeks ago of editor Nils Pratley, who left following the signing of the deal with PA.

The PA deal came after weeks of talks to find new investors in the paper, which was under threat of closure from its owners, the millionaire Barclay brothers.

The paper's future was plunged into doubt when the newspaper racked up losses of £7.8m, making a major contribution to the Barclay's £13.5m full-year losses.

At the time, the Barclays, who have invested £30m in the paper, told Sunday Business management to find a solution to the paper's financial problems or face closure.

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