Financial Times in deal with Murdoch's The Australian

LONDON – The Financial Times has signed a deal with the Rupert Murdoch-owned The Australian that will see a daily FT-branded page appearing in Australia's sole daily national newspaper.

The deal follows the recent news that the Financial Times will be the first international newspaper to publish in Australia, as it looks to expand its circulation to the growing financial and media centres of Sydney and Melbourne.

An Asian edition of the paper will start printing in Sydney in autumn, bringing the FT's total number of print sites to 24. The paper sells the bulk of its 424,658 copies overseas.

The syndication deal is the first for the FT in Australia and will see the world's second largest financial newspaper after the Wall Street Journal join existing partners of The Australian, which include the Murdoch-owned The Times, The Sunday Times, as well as The Economist, which is part owned by FT parent, Pearson.

Chris Mitchell, editor-in-chief of The Australian, said that the relationship with the FT would extend into other opportunities to help the paper cement its position in the business marketplace.

"We have expanded The Australian's business section dramatically this year and the link with the Financial Times to provide better coverage of corporate stories from Europe and in our region will cement us as the generalist newspaper with the best business section in the country," Mitchell said.

John Ridding, editor and publisher of the Asia edition of the FT, said the deal with The Australian was a major step in the market, which would culminate in the launch of a locally printed edition in Sydney in September.

Earlier this year, the FT signed an agreement to take a 13.85% equity stake in India's second-largest daily financial newspaper, the Business Standard. The purchase was the first major investment in an Indian newspaper by a foreign media investor.

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