The publisher of two of England’s biggest regional dailies has announced it is to axe up to 50 jobs across all departments.
It comes on top of 90 redundancies announced at the Wolverhampton and Telford-based titles earlier this year which saw overall headcount reduced by a tenth.
It is not clear how many of the new job losses will be editorial, but journalists currently make up around 20pc of the MNA’s 800-strong workforce.
The announcement was made to staff councils at the Express and Star and Shropshire Newspapers earlier this week.
Managing director Alan Harris told HTFP he is hoping most of the cuts will come through non-replacement and voluntary redundancy, but says he cannot rule out compulsory job cuts.
Said Alan: “This comes a against a difficult trading year in the past year and we’re expecting 2012 to be just as challenging.
“We are hoping to get this through a strict non-replacement policy and voluntary redundancies.”
No specific posts have currently been identified for cutbacks but heads of department are now reviewing their operations in a search for efficiency savings
A formal 30-day consultation period with staff has begun.
The earlier cutbacks, announced in April last year, eventually saw more than 40 compulsory job cuts made after not enough people volunteered for redundancy.
National Union of Journalists’ members held a ballot on strike action at the group but in the end no action was taken.