With its newspapers on the auction block, Tribune Co. will cut around 700 jobs over the next year -- most of them in the beleaguered publishing division, according to CEO Peter Liguori, who revealed
the planned layoffs in a memo circulated to employees on Wednesday. That amounts to around 6% of the company’s total workforce.
Liguori described the move as a step toward
unifying and streamlining the non-editorial functions within the publishing division, adding that there will be only “small reductions” in editorial staff. However, he didn’t specify
which non-editorial operations would be affected, leaving open the possibility of cuts across advertising sales, printing, and distribution, among other operations.
At the same time, he
revealed plans for new executive appointments in advertising, marketing, manufacturing and distribution, and human resources.
In an interview with the Los Angeles Times
Liguori said the newspaper division is still profitable.
This is just the latest in a series of staff reductions at Tribune as it moves to divest its newspaper properties and build up
its broadcast TV business. The company trimmed 240 positions in the third quarter of the year, including 20 positions at the Los Angeles Times
in July, following 120 cuts in the first half of
the year. In September, rumors began circulating that another round of cuts was coming with the goal of trimming costs by $100 million.
The reduction in staff has been even more
dramatic over the last decade. After the latest round of cuts, Tribune will employ around 11,000 people. That’s less than half the total of 25,600 employees the company had in 2001, for a 57%
decline over the last twelve years.
Unemployment Line photo from Shutterstock