Postmedia proclaims layoffs, will transfer 12 Alberta newspapers on-line

Postmedia Community Canada Corp.’s adjustments come every week after the corporate posted a deep quarterly loss.Chris Younger/The Canadian Press

Postmedia Community Canada Corp. PNC-A-T will transfer 12 Alberta group newspapers to a digital-only format and lay off staff within the months forward, in response to an inner memo despatched on Wednesday.

“That is completely not a mirrored image on the onerous work and contributions they’ve made to our firm however quite an end result of financial contraction that has affected so many firms globally and the inherent challenges of our trade,” wrote Postmedia president and chief govt Andrew MacLeod.

In a townhall Wednesday, Mr. MacLeod stated the areas affected will embrace editorial, gross sales, manufacturing and distribution. He advised staff that inflation and income declines have mixed to create a “good storm” for the corporate, which owns greater than 120 media properties, together with the Nationwide Publish, Vancouver Solar and Montreal Gazette.

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“To be blunt, with out utilizing a number of fancy phrases, we have to get our prices down,” he stated, in response to a recording obtained by The Globe and Mail. “We have to have our prices be extra in steadiness with the income surroundings that we discover ourselves in.”

A spokesperson for the corporate stated the publications transferring to digital-only beginning Feb. 27 embrace Fort McMurray Immediately, the Chilly Lake Solar and the Cochrane Instances.

In his memo, Mr. MacLeod positioned the adjustments as essential to constructing a “sustainable media group” whereas “managing value and mitigating income decline.”

Postmedia may also look to outsource printing operations “the place it is sensible,” and has struck an settlement with Glacier Media to maneuver all of its printing for Saskatchewan to Estevan Printing. Because of this, the corporate will promote its constructing in Saskatoon.

Individually, Postmedia stated Wednesday it has bought the Calgary Herald constructing to U-Haul Co. for $17.25-million.

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The adjustments come every week after the corporate posted a deep quarterly loss. Postmedia misplaced $15.9-million in its most up-to-date quarter in contrast with $4.4-million in the identical interval the 12 months earlier than. Income from promoting and circulation fell 5.9 per cent and 5.4 per cent respectively, although total income elevated partly owing to the corporate’s parcel-delivery enterprise.

Newspapers have been grappling for years with a decline in print promoting and circulation income whereas attempting to compensate by rising digital advert income and subscriptions. On account of the robust situations, Postmedia has shuttered titles, applied layoffs and provided voluntary buyouts over the previous few years. In 2022, the corporate additionally bought Brunswick Information, which publishes day by day and weekly titles, together with the Telegraph-Journal in Saint John.

Different adjustments introduced Wednesday embrace subleasing a constructing in Regina and transferring all Saskatchewan-based staff to everlasting distant work.

“We all know that this quantity of change is unsettling however we should proceed to deal with our technique and delivering for our audiences, purchasers and companions,” Mr. MacLeod wrote.

The monetary challenges within the trade have strained different media retailers lately, too. The previous joint house owners of Torstar Corp., which publishes the Toronto Star, fell out final 12 months partly due to disagreements over cost-cutting. Torstar held talks with Postmedia about combining the 2 firms, however no deal was accomplished, The Globe has reported.