Canadian Magazine Industry News
22 April 2009,     TORONTO/MONTREAL
More layoffs at Rogers
[This story has been updated.]

Rogers Publishing Ltd. laid off about 40 staffers in its consumer and b-to-b publishing divisions this morning, a source close to the company tells Masthead. The figure represents about 4% of the Rogers Publishing workforce.

The cuts were limited to publishing and did not affect other Rogers Media divisions, said Suneel Khanna, senior director of communications for Rogers Consumer Publishing. (An earlier story on MastheadOnline reported an unconfirmed, anonymous tip that said cuts went across the company.)

Khanna said the cuts related to the economic downturn and the particularly nasty effect it is having on magazine ad sales. “The drop in advertising spending has been even steeper than even we and other media had anticipated,” he said.

In a round of layoffs that took place in December, Rogers laid off about 40 staffers. In January, the company offered employees a voluntary four-day week in exchange for a 20% pay cut. The program was not implemented with any specific metrics in mind, Khanna said, but he added that only a “small number” of employees took the offer.

After the last round of job cuts, Brian Segal reportedly told employees there would be no more he didn't anticipate more layoffs in near future. “At that time we would have said we were right-sized for the current economy,” Khanna said. “I think we would say that again today. But that advertising drop-off has been much steeper than what we anticipated, so the situation we were dealing with at the end of last year is not the same as the situation we’re dealing with now.

Job cut tally:
  • One senior style editor and one Web editor at Chatelaine
  • Three editorial staff at Canadian Business
  • One editor and one sales rep at Design Engineering
  • A vice president of sales in the consumer publishing division
  • A staff writer at the Medical Post
  • A media editor at Marketing
  • An assistant art director at Flare
— M.U.
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