By Jennifer Saba
Feb 25 The New York Times Co said on
Monday that it was changing the name of the International Herald
Tribune (IHT) to the International New York Times, putting an
end to a more than 40-year-old brand that served as the hometown
paper for Americans living abroad.
The move to re-brand the IHT is not entirely unexpected. The
New York Times has stepped up efforts to strengthen its global
recognition, and it is in the process of shedding most of its
properties, including the Boston Globe.
Its new Chief Executive Mark Thompson, who began his job in
November, was tapped by the Times partly for his international
news experience as head of the BBC.
"We believe there is significant potential to grow the
number of New York Times subscribers outside of the United
States," Thompson said in a statement.
The Times Co said on Monday its global edition would be
launched later this year and that it would be edited from Hong
Kong, Paris, London and New York.
"The plan is to rebrand all IHT properties as the
International New York Times, but we will retain ownership of
the IHT name as there may be ways to use it to complement our
global brand strategy," said a company spokeswoman.
The New York Times rolled out a digital pay model almost two
years ago. Renaming the IHT will cut back any confusion as the
company tries to reach new worldwide subscribers under one
brand. Roughly 10 percent of the Times' 640,000 digital
subscribers are outside the United States.
The IHT website, for example, was already partly stamped
with the New York Times banner because the two papers shared
"I can't see many people stopping their reading of the IHT
because the brand changes," said Ken Doctor, an analyst with
The New York Times is a better known brand among younger
readers, said Doctor. "If you are selling new print
subscriptions the New York Times is going to be more
The IHT has had three name changes since it was founded 125
years ago, with New York in its title for 80 of those years.
In 1967, the Times Co acquired a third of the IHT, becoming
a joint owner with the Washington Post Co and the now
defunct Herald Tribune.
The owners called the venture the International Herald
Tribune, prompting Art Buchwald, one of the paper's columnists,
to quip, "By the time you finish pronouncing it, you've missed
your plane!" according to a 2006 edition of the American
The Times bought out the Washington Post's stake in 2004.
The IHT, which has a global print circulation of about
227,000 copies, has served English-speaking readers and American
expatriates living abroad and competes with the Financial Times
and the European edition of The Wall Street Journal.