POP22 – Sajeeda Merali, Professional Publishers Association (PPA)

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Sajeeda Merali, CEO of the Professional Publishers Association (PPA), explained the role that trust plays in the success of magazines. With 84% of the UK population connecting with PPA member brands, contributing £3.7bn to the UK economy, this is clearly a vital sector, and the engagement magazines have with their audiences is an important factor in their success.

The role of print within this success lies in its ability to “create a halo effect for the rest of the brand’s media channels”, acting as the foundation to an entire multi-media brand. Print magazines also remain a valuable part of a publisher’s business model, contributing £391m to the magazine sector in 2019.

Sajeeda Merali joined the PPA as CEO in 2021, with an agenda to transform the way the PPA represents and supports its 200+ UK multi-media business members, consumer magazine publishers, business-to-business data and information providers, customer magazine publishers, and smaller independents.

A strategic leader with 20 years of experience in the publishing industry, Sajeeda has held senior positions with both B2B and consumer-facing organisations, with extensive experience in change management and strategy development.

She joined the PPA from the New Statesman Media Group, where she was Chief Revenue Officer responsible for identifying high-value digital opportunities and launching commercial strategies for new brands in highly competitive markets.

Prior to that, she was the commercial leader of the Insider Publishing Division at Euromoney PLC and has held senior positions at Incisive Media, where she was influential in driving cultural and strategic change. Sajeeda is on the board of the Advertising Association, PLS, FIPP, CAP, PAMCo, and ABC.

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