Former Business Daily Managing Editor Ochieng Rapuro has been confirmed Editor-in-Chief of the Standard Group days after vacating his position as managing editor of regional news publication, The East African at the Nation Media Group (NMG).
In changes announced in a memo signed by Group CEO Orlando Lyomu, which Business Today has seen, the media house has abolished the editorial director role and has adopted the duplicate model of editor in chief and executive editor that NMG abandoned in January after the exit of Tom Mshindi.
Rapuro will now be in charge of editorial operations across all Standard Group’s platforms and will be tasked with ensuring that Standard competes with The Nation which is the most popular across digital and print platforms and Citizen TV which is the most popular broadcast TV station in the country.
“Mr Ochieng Rapuro has been appointed editor in chief of Standard Group with effect from July 1,” reads the statement.
Kipkoech Tanui, the immediate former Standard Editorial Deputy Director has been elevated to the position of group executive editor and head of news in a new converged structure.
Mr Tanui will be the chief coordinator of joint news gathering and processing under the convergence model and will also manage business interface between editorial and other departments.
Rapuro’s appointment as editor in chief is likely to come as a blow to Tanui who was widely viewed as the front runner since he was the senior most editor and owing to his close ties with the Moi Family, the owners of Standard Group.
The new changes are also likely to trigger sibling rivalry as Standard is now firmly in the hands of near age mates who worked together as colleagues at some point.
Duncan Kizito, the former head of Think Outdoor, the company’s billboard marketing business, has been appointed newsroom convergence manager. He has also been tasked to oversee implementation of the media house’s integration programme.
“In this new role, he will effectively manage the editorial and commercial transformation plans, liaising with external consultants, suppliers and internal teams to makes sure that were achieve our aims and objectives,” said Lyomu.
Also in the changes, Njoroge Kinuthia has taken over from Andrew Kipkemboi as Opinion, Quality and Content (OPed) editor. Kipkemboi has been moved to the position of editor partnerships and projects.
Ellen Wanjiru (managing editor KTN), John Bundotich (Managing Editor, Weekend Standard), Caroline Kimutai (Managing Editor, digital), Charles Otieno (Managing Editor, The Nairobian), Hassan M’Mbetsa (Managing Editor, Pambazuko) and Steve Mbogo (Managing Editor, Mt Kenya Star) have all been maintained in their respective positions.