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New York Times opens in Japan as part of 'major global growth initiative'

The New York Times has opened its first office in Japan / The New York Times Company

The New York Times (The Times) has opened up its first office in Japan, creating a localised office to lead all advertising in the region, including print, native, programmatic and events.

With Japan being the world’s third biggest ad market, it’s not the most surprising move, however Jean-Christophe Demarta, senior vice president of global advertising at the New York Times, said it was part of a wider growth strategy for the newspaper giant.

“There is a major global growth initiative underway at The Times, both journalistically and commercially We have already launched a number of initiatives to grow our audience even more outside of the U.S, including launching NYT En Español, and expanding our coverage and services for our audiences in Canada and Australia. We are now looking very closely at other places such as Japan, where we already have a substantial audience,” he told The Drum.

“Our primary focus will be for the export market, meaning Japanese advertisers who want to reach a U.S. audience as well as opinion leaders and business decision-makers across Asia and Europe. However, we will also explore local solutions and offer advertisers the capability to reach our audience directly in Japan,” he explained.

The company had previously used NewBase Japan as a local representative but will now be taking the selling of its commercial business in-house.

The company has offices in both Hong Kong, which is the regional head office, and Singapore. It uses third-party reps in a number of other Asian cities. The launch of the Japan office also times with the expansion of core offerings to Asia, including the launch of T Brand Studio in Hong Kong.

“Japan is a big country with a very important economy that has created and nurtured some of the world's most respected brands. By electing to service these companies directly, we want to make sure that they have the right level of information about The Times as a world-class news brand, all of the opportunities that are available on The Times as well as insights into The Times’s vast and engaged audience. By having our own staff in Tokyo, we will have salespeople who will be 100% dedicated to the promotion of our products and services which in the end will benefit our clients,” added Demarta.

According to Demarta, the audience is already significant in Japan, which helped to sway the decision to move in-house and invest fully in the market.

“Our readership in Japan has grown significantly, as it did in the rest of the APAC region and globally, benefiting from a particularly rich news environment. Japan is one of our highest international reader markets with more than half a million of unique users. According to Comscore, this number of readers makes us one of the most read English news platform in the country,” he said.

The new team will be led by commercial director Shigeo Yushita, who is also head of B2B subscription and circulation sales at The Times in Tokyo, a position he has had for six years.