The restructure will see the media company reduce its headcount by 12 per cent.
Chloe Shakesby

More than 500 jobs at risk in local and national media as Reach moves to "centralised structure"

A commercial news chain has announced that it will be cutting more than 500 jobs as it suffers a drop in advertising revenue.

Reach plc, which is headquartered in London and owns national and regional news outlets, plans a reduction in headcount of around 550 people, which is approximately 12 per cent of its workforce.

It said that its revenue decreased by 27.5 per cent in the second quarter of this year due to a fall in advertising demand, and that it expects the restructure to deliver £35m in annualised savings.

The company, which owns 240 regional titles as well as national papers such as the Daily Mirror, also announced that its editorial staff will move to a more centralised structure, “bringing together national and regional teams”.

It said: “The plans announced today will reshape the Reach business into a streamlined, efficient organisation with more focused editorial, advertising (solutions and local commercial) and central operations.

“Editorial will move to a more centralised structure bringing together national and regional teams across print and digital to significantly increase efficiency and remove duplication while maintaining the strong editorial identity of our news brands.

“In local commercial as well as in finance, Reach will move to fewer locations and a simpler management structure, with costs geared to current market conditions.”

Jim Mullen, CEO of Reach plc, commented: “Structural change in the media sector has accelerated during the pandemic and this has resulted in increased adoption of our digital products.

“However, due to reduced advertising demand, we have not seen commensurate increases in digital revenue.

“To meet these challenges and to accelerate our customer value strategy, we have completed plans to transform the business and are ready to begin the process of implementation.

“Regrettably, these plans involve a reduction in our workforce and we will ensure all impacted colleagues are treated with fairness and respect throughout the forthcoming consultation process.

“The plans will provide a stable platform for us to accelerate our strategy, based on stronger and deeper customer relationships, increasing our appeal to advertisers.

“This will ensure the sustainability and profitability of the Reach business, enabling it to deliver to stakeholders over the long-term.”

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