Compulsory redundancies will be “unavoidable” at MEN Media in a large-scale shake-up affecting its daily and weekly titles.
In an official statement, the company says that it has examined every option but admits it must “substantially” reduce staffing numbers and anticipates compulsory job losses.
It said: “While we will seek volunteers for redundancy wherever possible, we anticipate that compulsory redundancies will be unavoidable. Those people affected will be offered significantly enhanced severance terms.
“The viability of local and regional titles is under threat due to steeply falling revenues that we do not expect to return to previous levels even when economic conditions improve.
“The major changes announced at MEN Media today are designed to protect the business and its journalism for the future through a new model with significantly lower fixed costs.”
The proposed changes announced today include:
“If we want to continue to be able to do this, we need to find a new, sustainable, lower-cost business model to support it.
“The economic viability of local and regional newspapers is under very real and imminent threat.
“The decision about job losses has been a very difficult one to make and I deeply regret that it has been necessary. Nonetheless, I do believe this is the right decision for MEN Media’s future and for the majority of staff who will remain with the company.
“There is a successful future for local and regional journalism in the commercial sector, but we need to protect our businesses now to give ourselves the best chance of reaching it.”
Dandepan (11/03/2009 09:33:21)
Dodson’s changed his tune it’s not so long ago that he was telling journalists that they were working in an advertising industry, always had been, and should get used to it.
In four years he has steered GMG from record profits to a shell while picking up big personal bonuses. Time for him and his chauffeur to fall on their swords.
Alan Salter (11/03/2009 10:10:26)
We can all point the finger but let’s be sensible. I never agreed with Dodson’s way but he can take credit for spotting the writing on the wall before most other managements. It is just sad for the industry that one of Britain’s best newspapers has come to this.