Page last updated at 15:23 GMT, Tuesday, 27 October 2009

Closure on cards for London Lite

London Lite newspapers on display
The London Lite was launched three years ago

The fate of the London Lite newspaper appears uncertain after its publisher said it was considering its future, "which may result in closure".

Associated Newspapers said it would consult 36 London Lite employees before making a final decision.

Associated voiced concerns about the "commercial viability" of the paper.

Earlier this month, the Evening Standard started being given away for free in London. In September, the free London Paper ceased publication.

"The latest development in the London afternoon free newspaper space dictates that we look again at the future of London Lite," said Steve Auckland, managing director of Associated Newspapers free division.

"Despite reaching a large audience with an excellent editorial format, we are concerned about the commercial viability in this highly competitive area."

The London Lite was launched three years ago to take on the London Paper, owned by News International, and the London Evening Standard, which was then a paid-for paper and also owned by Associated.

Russian billionaire Alexander Lebedev took control of the Standard in January.

When the Standard went free on 12 October its circulation increased from 250,000 to more than 600,000, putting further pressure on the London Lite.

If the Lite does close, it will leave the Standard as the only daily evening paper in the capital.

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