Interview with The Indian Post’s Michael B-Brown

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A shrewd company has launched an Anglo-Indian newspaper to take advantage of the Indian economy�۪s ability to have proven robust against the global recession and to drive an economic recovery.

BizAsia.co.uk’s Hamant Verma spoke to Michael Buckmaster-Brown, the managing director of Global News Corp, about newly launched The Indian Post.

The Global News Corp already has the Spanish Title El Iberico within its stable and plans to launch a Brazilian title and a French title in the very near future. Les concurrents prennent garde!

Why did you choose the free newspaper model for The Indian Post?
The free newspaper model for the post was decided upon because of our general format and belief that free titles are the only possible future for the news industry.

Why The Indian Post rather than The South Asian Post?
The Indian Post was chosen as the name of this newspaper, mainly because this paper represents people from Indian sub-continent as a whole and the Indian community in particular, and our initial research proved Britain needed a title exclusively for the Indian population.

How will the Internet impact upon your vision for the title?
In my general opinion the Internet should not really affect us as a title, certainly not at the present time. People generally still prefer to read a hard copy of a newspaper or book or magazine. Until this changes for the majority of the population, I can see no reason why the printed matter will not continue to be important. I personally feel that it will be many years before the Internet makes any inroads.

What did you make of David Cameron�۪s visit to India, in particular his comments about a new humility among the British towards India and his criticism of security forces in Pakistan?
Regarding David Cameron�۪s visit to India, perhaps I can start by explaining that the Indian Post is formatted as a non-political newspaper and as such will only print the facts of direct news items.

My personal comments related to the visit are, that I strongly believe that there is certainly a direct link between India and Britain, much history and time has travelled between both our great nations, I believe that a direction where both nations hold true will produce a great future. The prime ministers visit was a strong indication that a lasting relationship will be set in stone and perhaps the foundation for an increasing special relationship.

Why do so few mainstream advertisers fail to see the potential for advertising in the ethnic media?
Britain has certainly suffered over the years from not having a dedicated Indian title. It was truly amazing for me to find that London and Britain did not have in place a lasting title of any substance. I think advertisers are just not used to reaching this target audience of Asians and as such advertising has been at a low. We plan of course to change this mindset.

Is it unrealistic to wish that a British Asian newspaper and its website can ever be resourced to the level of mainstream nationals, such as The Daily Mirror or commit to spend heavily on marketing, such as The Mail does?
As to the success of a British Asian Newspaper, especially of the free type, this really depends on the Indian and Asian communities in some respects. As our newspaper relies on advertising revenue, it is purely up to the business community to back us. With a good section of the business community behind us, I can see no reason why the post could not go national this year, and perhaps daily by next year. All options are open.

Where will The Indian Post be in three years�۪ time?
I would hope to see The Indian Post as Britain�۪s leading Asian daily Newspaper, even venturing to say that my hope and ambition is that one day Indians will be able to find copies in all the major cities of Europe.

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