Economist Group CEO Headed to Thomson Reuters

Andrew Rashbass to lead Reuters' news, media biz

Economist Group CEO Andrew Rashbass is leaving the company after 15 years for another top spot in the news world: a newly created role of CEO at Reuters, in which he will oversee the news and media business arm of Thomson Reuters.

“I am excited to be joining Reuters with its unmatched commitment to reporting with speed, accuracy, integrity and independence,” Rashbass said in a statement today. “As well as being, or in fact because they are, essential to Reuters journalism, these characteristics can also drive huge commercial success.”

Rashbass, who had also been the managing director of and publisher of The Economist before becoming the company’s CEO in 2008, will be based in London and report to Thomson Reuters CEO James Smith when he begins his new job later this summer. Reuters editor in chief Stephen Adler, meanwhile, will report to Rashbass.

According to the Wall Street Journal (a Thomson Reuters competitor), the company’s top line has weakened over the past year as its core business—trading and investor services—has declined, while restructuring costs added to a first-quarter net loss this year. The Economist Group, meanwhile, has been strong, with revenue rising 4 percent in 2012, according to its annual report. Its flagship magazine, The Economist, has found success with a model that charges a premium (more than $100) for an annual subscription and is increasingly driving readers to the Web and tablet edition, all while lessening its reliance on print advertising.