'Quartz' Cuts 40% Of Staff Amid Ad Losses, 'Chicago Tribune' Union Employees Furloughed

Quartz is letting go of 40% of its staff, or about 80 people, after parent company Uzabase said ad revenue at the business news site had declined by 54% during the first quarter.

“As such, Uzabase has made a decision to accelerate efforts to reorganize Quartz’s business and to eliminate any potential future risks at an early stage, which will involve a shift toward a leaner structure through a fundamental business reform focused on restructuring the advertising business (approximately 40% headcount reduction),” the company stated.

Editorial staff is being reduced from 85 positions to 50.

Quartz launched a paid subscription business after it was acquired by Uzabase in 2018.

Separately, Tribune Publishing and the Chicago Tribune Guild agreed to furlough all unionized Chicago Tribune newsroom employees making over $40,000 for three weeks.

The furloughs, a cost-saving measure, will be taken in one-week increments from May through July. 



Furloughed employees will continue to receive health benefits, as well as unemployment insurance, but no salary.

Furloughs for nonunion employees across the company were announced last month, when Tribune Publishing also implemented permanent pay cuts of up to 10% for nonunion employees making $67,000 a year or more. 

Tribune Publishing -- which owns the Chicago Tribune, the Baltimore Sun and the New York Daily News, among other publications -- is scheduled to report its first-quarter earnings on May 22.

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