The layoffs amount to a little over 1% of the company’s total workforce of 3,800. According to the company, the cuts are part of a broader reorganization that will also see some staff assuming new roles.
It’s not clear how the staff reductions are distributed between Meredith’s TV and magazine divisions, whose fortunes have diverged over the last few years. In the most recent quarter, TV revenues jumped 31% to $183 million, reflecting a big bump in cyclical political ad spending, while total ad revenues at the magazine division slipped 2% to $135 million.
Meredith has plenty of company among other magazine publishers, also trimming costs and reshuffling personnel amid a challenging print ad market.
Time Inc. recently reorganized its sales and marketing team as part of a broader push to sell advertising based on category, rather tha magazine title. The restructuring resulted in 30 staffers leaving the company, including six senior sales and marketing executives. Some took voluntary packages; others were let go when their positions were eliminated.
Rumors are circulating of a possible merger between Meredith and Time Inc.
The publishers originally flirted with a merger back in 2013, when the Meredith tie-up was one of several options considered by Time Inc.’s management, as the company prepared to separate from corporate parent Time Warner. Nothing came of the talks, and Time Inc. finally spun off from Time Warner by itself in 2014.
However, Time Inc. has reportedly fielded several expressions of interest in recent months, including an unsolicited offer from billionaire entertainment investor Edgar Bronfman Jr.; the publisher rejected the offer, but it stirred renewed talk of a merger or takeover by another company.