A news retailer who has added a surcharge to weekend editions of The Sun in order to maintain margins has not seen a drop in sales on the Saturday edition.
Since February, when News International cut the price of its Saturday paper to 50p and launched The Sun on Sunday, also priced at 50p, Walter Bush of Baginton Village Stores near Coventry has added a 10p surcharge to both newspapers.
He said most customers understood his decision once he had explained his reasons, and sales of the Saturday Sun had been unaffected by the price rise. “We’re still selling about 30-38 copies as before, but I’ve limited The Sun on Sunday to five copies as the margin is still low compared with other Sunday papers.”
However, sales of the weekday Sun have dropped since NI raised the cover price to 40p, Walter added.
Walter is under pressure from News International to drop the surcharge. “They said that they didn’t have to supply me and that they’d review the situation. But I needed to maintain my margin otherwise my home delivery service would be subsidising the weekend Sun,” he told C-Store. “It niggles me that they think they can dictate what I can and can’t do.”
He said he wanted to take a stand against the newspaper industry as a whole. “I’m disgusted by the way papers are sold and administered. My deliver costs are £46 per week, about 3p per newspaper.
“We need to start kicking back and if News International puts itself in a position where it wants to be kicked, that’s fine.”
Julian Davies, director of partner sales at News International, said: “News International will be following up with the retailer to resolve this situation.”