History of Gulf News

1978 saw the launch of two English dailies in the Gulf. While its competitor carved a special niche for itself in the market and built up a loyal readership, Gulf News remained erratic, barely surviving with a circulation of 3000. Problems were compounded with ownership changes and with no investors willing to take a risk, it was on the verge of closure.

Then, in one dramatic move the fate of Gulf News changed. In 1984, three visionary, leading businessmen of Dubai bought it over. And Gulf News was relaunched on December 10, 1985 by Al Nisr Publishing LLC.

Within a few months Gulf News had new premises, new printing technology, revitalised editorial, marketing, circulation teams and production professionals to harness the new technology. A multi-pronged marketing strategy hit the target, advertising revenues soared by over 40% in the first three months, and subscriptions took a gigantic leap.

History of gulf news
Dubai Marina remains one of the favourite communities due to it's amenities and prime location. Image Credit: Shuttershock

Key Dates

Major milestones for GN Media from 1978 all the way through to 2014

1978    Sep-30    Gulf News launches in tabloid format, based in the Abulhoul printing press office on Airport Road.
1980    Jan-01    Format changes to broadsheet, under new ownership of Abdul Wahab Galadari.

History of gulf news

1980 Jan-01: Format changes to broadsheet, under new ownership of Abdul Wahab Galadari
1980    Jan-04    Al Ju'ma launches as a weekend magazine published with the newspaper
1979    Sep-24    Junior News launches as a separate section aimed at children
1984    Nov    Gulf News acquired from receivers of Abdul Wahab Galadari by Al Nisr Publishing LLC, a new company with three shareholders: Obaid Humaid Al Tayer, Abdullah Hassan Al Rostamani, and Juma Al Majid
1985    Dec-10    Gulf News relaunches with new look and vision

History of gulf news

1985    Dec    Gulf News moves to new premises on Abu Dhabi Road next to Safa Park
1986    Feb-08    After free trial of three months, Gulf News is priced at Dh 1 per copy
1986    Oct-02    Junior News relaunches targeted at younger children
1986    Nov-07    Gulf Weekly replaces Al Ju'ma as a more sophisticated weekend read
1986    Mar-28    First Gulf News Fun Drive, which continues to present day, taking large numbers of amateur drivers through the desert
1987    Sep-27    Gulf News starts distribution in GCC countries with Bahrain
1989    March    Gulf News sponsors the first Dubai Desert Classic golf tournment, of which it is still a partner
1989    Sept    Gulf News launches its annual Gulf Business Awards for which the Gala Dinner was a social high point for Dubai
1990    Jul-01    Gulf News wins the Asia-Pacific Award for Best Newspaper Production for 1989 (and again in 1992)
1990    Oct-01    Gulf News introduces separate Business & Sport sections
1995    Jan-01    Cover price of Gulf News increases to Dhs 2
1995    Nov-30    Gulf News leads the way on reducing broadsheet page size by going to a width of 38 centimetres.
1996    Mar-27    Gulf News sponsors Golden Shaheen horse race in the first Dubai World Cup meeting, which it has done every year since.
1996    Sep-01    First online edition of Gulf News launches as gulf-news.com.

History of gulf news

1997    May-26    Al Nisr Publishing becomes a Limited Liability Company (LLC) with a share capital of Dh15 million.
1997    Jun-17    Time capsule created by students of Dubai Men's College is buried at Gulf News, to be dug up 100 years later in 2097.
1999    May-05    Gulf News introduces 4 pages of worldwide and regional reports on stock exchanges, a first in the region.
2000    Jan-01    Separate Property section of Classifieds launches.
2000    Mar-03    Cover price of Gulf News increases to Dhs 3 for Friday edition only.
2000    Apr-05    Gulf News moves to new offices (still there today in 2014) that included state-of-the-art technology throughout, with fibre-optic cabling and the most advanced printing press in the Middle East.
2001    Apr-01    Entertainment Plus (e+ ) launches, focused on local and international TV and cinema news.
2002    Jun-01    First issue of Aquarius published by Al Nisr Media FZ LLC, a woman's magazine focused beauty and health.
2003    Jun-21    Gulf News implements a complete re-design with support from leading global newspaper design house, Garcia Media.

History of gulf news

2003    Oct-01    InsideOut, a monthly interior design magazine, launched by Al Nisr Media FZ LLC.
2004    Sep-14    First issue of 'Weekend Review', a thoughtful weekly newspaper section including social issues, art, books and science.
2005    Mar-15    Wheels magazine launches, covering automotive news, car reviews and motoring features.
2005    Nov-10    Al Nisr Group signs MOU with Emirates Media Inc acquiring broadcast licences for Radio 1 & 2.
2006    Jun-16    Gulf News launches a dedicated Readers Desk, focusing on bringing the readers voice into the newspaper and online site.
2006    Aug-01    Gulf News launches GN Broadcasting, GNB, with English FM Radio 1 & Radio 2.
2006    Nov-17    FM magazine (Friday for Men) launches as quarterly magazine.
2007    Jan-09    GNB moves into new state of the art radio production studios.
2007    Mar-15    XPRESS launches as a weekly newspaper focused on community news in Dubai and Abu Dhabi.
2008    Sep-30    Emirates Post issues limited edition of stamps commemmorating Gulf News' 30th anniversary.

History of gulf news

2009    Feb-11    Gulf News starts to tweet. Twitter account launched.
2010    Oct-01    In midst of property recession, two magazines Freehold Monthly & Property Monthly merged & launched as 'Property'.
2011    Mar-20    Gulf News launches its first Ipad Edition

History of gulf news

2011    Mar-24    Gulf News launches its official Facebook page
2011    Oct-01    Alpha launches, monthly man’s magazine covering fitness, technology, fashion and sport
2011    Oct-07    Scene replaces e+ with greater emphasis on celebrity news
2011    Nov-28    Gulf News receives an award from Forbes as the top English language website in UAE and ranks 12th among Arab and English sites in the region
2012    Mar-01    GNB launches Hayat, an Arabic FM station.
2012    Apr    Gulf News’ designer wins Society for News Design award to create the book cover of the 33rd edition of Society for News Design.
2012    Jun-01    Gulf News becomes the first in the region to adopt the Berliner newspaper format, and at the same time implements a complete redesign.

History of gulf news

2012    Jul-03    GNB adds Josh, a Hindi FM station
2012    Sep-16    Gulf News launches its midday video bulletin on gulfnews.com, bringing the latest breaking news, business, sports and entertainment stories.
2012    Oct-02    Gulf News launches GNWheels.com, a new smartphone-friendly version of the popular GNwheels website, which is part of the GNAds4U service
2012    Oct-15    SMS service of Gulf News is launched as part of the 34th Gulf News anniversary celebration.
2012    Dec    Forbes Middle East award for Gulf News - says it is the top English newspaper online in the Arab World. Gulf News jumps from 12th to 3rd for all media.
2013    Jan-07    GulfNews.com launches its revamped mobile site - m.gulfnews.com
2013    Feb    The Society for News Design (SND) announces Gulf News is one of its top 10 global winners with 21 design awards including one Gold medal, out of the 3 given for the James Bond Special in tabloid! The gold medal for Gulf News is the only one from the Middle East region.
2013    Mar-14    XPRESS Abu Dhabi launches in addition to the Dubai edition, giving a better community focus
2013    Mar-20    Property Weekly, a weekly magazine covering the reviving UAE property market, re-launches.
2013    Jun-01    The cover price of Gulf News increases to Dh 5 from Dh 3
2013    Aug    Gulf News brand is rated third in the region in the 2013 Global Effie Effectiveness Index, along with other brands like McDonald’s, Dove and STC
2013    Sep-07    Gulf News launches its Instagram account
2013    Oct    GulfNews.com updates its apps across iOs, Android, Windows and Blackberry, for Tablet and Mobile devices.
2013    Dec-13    Tabloid! goes 7 days a week and starts publishing on Friday
2013    Jun-Jul    Gulf News Sport adds 70,000 twitter followers in one month thanks to its strong FIFA World Cup coverage.
2014    Mar-01    WatchTime magazine launches (GN Media's first licensed magazine)
2014    May-17    Wheels Arabic launches (GN Media's first consumer magazine entirely in Arabic)
2014    Aug    Facebook users go past 500,000, Twitter followers on the main Gulf News account edge past 130,000