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Evening Standard losses at £16.9m - 45 per cent down from last year

London's iconic evening newspaper has halved its losses in the year up to September 2010

During its first year of operation under the ownership of Evgeny Lebedev, the London Evening Standard's losses fell from £30.6m to £16.9m.

The projection for the year up to September 2011 is that the paper will lose £7.7m, a further 55 per cent reduction on the 2009-20 losses.

The successive reduction of losses is regarded as something of a triumph by the board of Evening Standard Ltd, especially amid a climate of rising newsprint prices and falling readerships elsewhere in the market.

"We think the halving of the losses is dramatic proof that we are moving tin the right direction during a difficult trading period," said Lebedev, the chairman.

Lebedev has transformed the paper since his acquisition of the Standard in October 2009. It is now one of London's leading newspapers, and is widely read in the capital.

"The losses are going down. Distribution and readership is going up. And we have reduced the distribution cost of each copy from 36p to less than 4p.

"We have had two very good years and we're looking forward to a third."

Emanuelle Degli Esposti is the editor and founder of The Arab Review, an online journal covering arts and culture in the Arab world. She also works as a freelance journalist specialising in the politics of the Middle East.