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Katharine Viner to edit US Guardian, Emily Wilson to take reins of Oz operation

Katharine Viner

Katharine Viner

Katharine Viner editor-in-chief of The Guardian Australia has been promoted to the role of editor-in-chief of the group’s US operation.

Viner is to be replaced by Emily Wilson the network editor of theguardian.com, who has for the last two years has been responsible for overseeing all UK digital content and editing the UK homepage.

The Guardian announced its move into Australia in early 2013 and formally launched its Australian operation in May with a number of big hires including Lenore Taylor, Katharine Murphy and David Marr. The news provider has recently also announced a Melbourne expansion which will see its Australian operation grow to more than 50 staff.

“Katharine has done a terrific job in Australia, opening a brand new operation in Sydney, building a great team of interesting and talented journalists, increasing traffic dramatically, setting the agenda, and quickly establishing the Guardian as a force to be reckoned with in Australian journalism,” said Alan Rushbridger, editor-in-chief of Guardian News & Media, in a statement.

“She is a fantastic editor and, under her leadership, Guardian US will continue to go from strength to strength.

Emily Gibson

Emily Wilson

“Emily is an enormously experienced and talented journalist who has proven she can do anything across print and digital, most recently expertly editing the UK network front of the theguardian.com. She will bring energy, enthusiasm and expertise to Guardian Australia, to build on the amazing start Kath has made.”

Viner replaces US editor Janine Gibson who will move to London to take up the role of a deputy editor of Guardian News & Media and editor-in-chief of theguardian.com. In a statement, Katharine Viner said she was proud of what she and the Australian team of The Guardian had achieved.

“The launch of Guardian Australia has been the professional and journalistic experience of a lifetime. I’m very proud of our incredible team of the best journalists in Australia,” said Viner.

“I know Guardian Australia will go from strength to strength under Emily’s editorship and I’m excited about watching it happen. There are no limits to what Guardian Australia can achieve.”

Since its launch in May, The Guardian’s Australian operation has broken a number of big stories including the revelations that Australia spied on Indonesian president Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono and his wife.

However, its online audience, according to industry measurement metric Nielsen Online Ratings has remained relatively stable with The Guardian hovering at between of 1m and 1.3m users per month. The Guardian argues that Nielsen is under-representing its audience by not including mobile traffic in the online ratings.

The Guardian is one of a number of overseas online challengers to enter the Australian market. Since its launch in May the Mail Online and US viral content site Buzzfeed have also launched Australian operations.

This week The Guardian globally reported it had made more than £70m ($128.9m) in digital revenues, a 25 per cent increase on the previous year.

Nic Christensen 

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