Times’ Digital Director Sandhu Is Leaving News Corp.

Times Newspapers’ digital director is leaving the company, after having relaunched the News Corp (NSDQ: NWS) titles as paid digital products, paidContent:UK has learned.

Gurtej Sandhu is on garden leave and is expected to join a new company in February.

Sandhu was brought over from News Corp’s Star TV channel in India, where he was SVP of new media and information technology, in January 2010 to manage the project.

His departure coincides with the completion of The Times project’s big first phase and with Tuesday’s disclosure of its sales figures for the first four months.

Following WSJ.com, which News Corp acquired, The Times newspapers are News Corp’s first consumer news titles to introduce digital charges, followed by its Australian titles, Britain’s News Of The World and, soon, The Sun, Britain’s most popular printed paper.

Other News International execs associated with the projects are now moving on…

— David McAdam, who had project-managed the development and launch of iPad editions for News International’s mass-market titles, also recently left, having brought The Sun’s app to market.

— The Sun’s long-time online editor Pete Picton is joining News Corp’s Daily Planet project, to devise a mass-market national U.S. title on tablets.

Sandhu had already worked as a systems admin manager and operations director for News International between 1996 and 2001, before joining online music marketing company Worldpop.

After returning to consult with News International and Emap, he joined Star for three years in 2007.