VNU has poached an editor from Dennis Publishing to handle the May issue relaunch of its 120,000-selling monthly, PC Direct.
The former deputy editor of PC Pro, Paul Hales, joins on 22 January - ending the computer title's five-month spell without an editor.
Hales is one of several key appointments by editor-in-chief Riyad Emeran, who had overseen PC Direct in the interim along with freelance editor Alistair Dabbs.
Sarah Kidner joined last week from the ashes of Future Publishing's ill-fated Connect magazine, which was abandoned before it launched (PRWeek, 15 December 2000). She is deputy editor with responsibility for news.
Emeran also said he is close to appointing a reviews editor.
The relaunch issue, which Emeran described as 'radical', will be available at the end of March. Featuring as yet unnamed new sections and increased pagination, it is aimed at broadening the magazine's appeal and recovering lost ground among the core readership of small businesses and home office PC users.
'It was a case of ripping the guts out and starting again,' said Emeran.
'PC Direct had no focus. We are going back to its roots, to address the buyer. It will be a new product.'
Quality editorial will become increasingly important in the fight to keep and grow circulation, he said.
PC Direct was bought last year from Ziff-Davis UK and has been seen by VNU as a stagnant product in which readers have lost confidence. Emeran said Hales was a name in the industry: 'Manufacturers know him and trust him.'
Hales, who was deputy editor for three years at PC Pro, said: 'It is a broad market that we are looking at; we can pick up readers from anywhere with buying advice, a good news section and full features service.'
The eight-strong editorial team will increase, Emeran promised, although there are no plans to go fortnightly.