Cuts warning from Schibsted / News / The Foreigner

Cuts warning from Schibsted. UPDATED: Media giant Schibsted Norge is to slash several hundred million kroner in by 2016 in an efficiency-drive, reports suggest. Opinions amongst editors in chief differ. Stating the financial streamlining is designed to “prepare us for the reality we are facing”, CEO Didrik Munch tells Norwegian business daily Dagens Næringsliv (DN) the internal ‘RP15’ project is an initiative from editors within the company.  Schibsted Norge owns national and regional papers Aftenposten, Bergens Tidende (BT) Stavanger Aftenblad, Fædrelandsvennen, – formerly part of group Media Norge – tabloid VG, and successful Internet advertising portal finn.no.

schibstednorgecuts, medianorge, journalism



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Cuts warning from Schibsted

Published on Thursday, 7th June, 2012 at 10:14 under the news category, by Michael Sandelson   .
Last Updated on 7th June 2012 at 14:29.

UPDATED: Media giant Schibsted Norge is to slash several hundred million kroner in by 2016 in an efficiency-drive, reports suggest. Opinions amongst editors in chief differ.

CEO Didrik Munch
'We are keen to be ahead and prepare for the reality we are facing'CEO Didrik Munch
Photo: Schibsted Norge


Challenges

Stating the financial streamlining is designed to “prepare us for the reality we are facing”, CEO Didrik Munch tells Norwegian business daily Dagens Næringsliv (DN) the internal ‘RP15’ project is an initiative from editors within the company. 

Schibsted Norge owns national and regional papers Aftenposten, Bergens Tidende (BT) Stavanger Aftenblad, Fædrelandsvennen, – formerly part of group Media Norge – tabloid VG, and successful Internet advertising portal finn.no.

Last year’s turnover of NOK 4.6 billion (approximately USD 757.5 million), and a pre-tax result of NOK 619 million (almost USD 102 million) for the first four publications.

Cuts are believed to be in the region of NOK 450 to 700 million (about USD 74-115 million), and come amidst fears of faster falls in circulation and advertising incomes than first predicted, according to DN.

Didrik Munch says the move is designed for robustness and quality in preparation for a digital-based future.

“Our positions on the web and within printed editions are strong, but mobile [platforms] is becoming more important than ever. We are keen to be ahead, and it’s obvious we need to produce cheaper paper-based products than we are doing at the moment,” he declares, not wishing to comment on amounts or confirm information revealed.

A broad report sent to the various chief editors contains several efficiency-related measures. These include increased buying in of externally-produced travel and food articles, and downsizing by 80 to 100 Schibsted Norge staff. 

It is not believed any employees have been informed of the specifics yet. Union shop steward Rune Valderhaug tells DN, “it’s still at an early stage, but we perceive this as being a project purely to save money.”

“It’s the old cliché about smarter production while maintaining the quality of journalism.”

Inaccurate

Meanwhile chief editors have a different view of what Dagens Næringsliv writes. BT’s Trine Eilertsen tells The Foreigner, “These figures are completely unknown to me in relation to RP15. We’ve only just begun on the project and not got as far as stated.”

“DN has mixed various things together in its summary [regarding the figures]” says Aftenposten’s Hilde Haugsjerd.

In his article on Stavanger Aftenblad’s website, Lars Helle comments, “the process is underway, but no decision has been made what measures will be implemented.”

“We are not in a crisis, which means we then have the opportunity to think deeply about the future and work properly with different scenarios."

Although he confirms Aftenbladet is considering cooperation across the titles in some areas, Mr Helle adds, “We will take care of the editorial core, and assume that people read us because of our expertise in the region. This [RP15] is not about downsizing.”

Fædrelandsvennen’s chief editor Eivind Ljøstad was not available by phone when The Foreigner contacted him.

Top Schibsted Norge executives are to go through the report at a meeting on 18 June.



Published on Thursday, 7th June, 2012 at 10:14 under the news category, by Michael Sandelson   .
Last updated on 7th June 2012 at 14:29.

This post has the following tags: schibstednorgecuts, medianorge, journalism.


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