Howa's appointment follows on from the departure of her predecessor, Adrian Ephraim, who has been appointed as Independent Media - Group Digital Content Editor and editor of African Independent.
Independent Media executive chairman Dr Iqbal Surve congratulates Riana Howa on her appointment as editor of IOL
Picture: Ian Landsberg
Howa has been in media since 2004, where she started off as a sub-editor and layout artist at Independent, working with three of the Cape-based titles. She joined IOL in 2009, and was a content editor before being appointed head of news.
Howa has been involved in developing the digital and social media strategy for IOL, which has one million daily readers clicking on an average of 6.5 million pages per week. She is also part of the team managing IOL's social media brands, including engaging with IOL's 207,000 Twitter followers and on Facebook, which has a reach of 1.3 million.
“I would like to thank Dr Survé and Adrian for showing faith in me, and for giving me the opportunity to take my passion for digital news and the IOL brand to the next level. It has been an honour to be part of Independent Media's proud history of quality journalism at our print titles as well as its innovative and ground-breaking developments in the digital space.
“I now look forward to leading IOL's dedicated and energetic team in building on the success of Independent Media's digital vision, expanding our readership and growing audience and social media engagement,” said Howa.
Ephraim said: “Riana is one of our more experienced members of staff at IOL and Independent Media. With more than a decade at Independent, her knowledge and understanding of IOL's systems and its audience will help take IOL to new heights. Her strong print background also means she understands the important role Independent's newspaper titles play in getting us to a digital future. I am confident that Riana will excel as editor and will be pivotal to IOL's growth. I wish her well in her new role.”
Executive Chairman of Independent Media, Dr Iqbal Survé, said: “I am very pleased to announce and welcome Riana Howa as the new IOL editor. She has demonstrated that she is ready to step into this position, as she has been a senior member of the IOL team for the last seven years.
“This appointment also speaks to our transformation agenda, especially with regard to gender equity. Make no mistake, Riana is qualified for this position, but it is a boon when our appointments align neatly with our transformation agenda.
“Riana joins the growing number of female editors at Independent, who include Chantel Erfort, Chiara Carter, Slindile Khanyile, Yogas Nair, Val Bojé, Kashiefa Ajam and Adriana Senekal. I congratulate and wish Riana well as she steps into the IOL editor role,” Survé said.