Canadian Magazine Industry News
2 May 2012,     TORONTO
Rogers Media shutting down eight websites
THIS STORY HAS BEEN UPDATED: Rogers Media is shutting down eight of its websites, including the popular and 

An internal Rogers communication was sent anonymously to Masthead on Wednesday, noting sites on the chopping block include,, ciné,,,,, and

Marketing magazine, itself a Rogers publication, noted in its story about the closures today that Branchez-Vous (a French-language news and technology site) averaged 435,000 unique visitors and 3.6 million pageviews per month, while the female-focused SweetSpot sites were recording 145,000 unique visitors and 1.2 million pageviews per month. Rogers originally bought into SweetSpot with a minority stake in 2006, later taking majority control. At one point the site expected to earn $3 million in annual revenue. The Quebec edition was launched in 2010.

The Sweetspot site tells readers to visit other Rogers sites, all tied to existing print magazine brands including Flare, LouLou, Today's Parent and Chatelaine.

The internal letter noted the company is taking this direction to focus on its "multiplatform integration and growth opportunities for our premium brands."

UPDATE: Andrea Goldstein, senior director of communications for Rogers Media, said Thursday morning that about 20 employees have been affected, and "we are currently engaged in the process of identifying new roles for some of the impacted individuals."

Rogers is currently winding down operations on the sites, "with full closure expected in the coming weeks," noted Goldstein. garnered four nominations including best use of social media, best e-newsletter, best web design, and best online-only site in last year's Canadian Online Publishing Awards sponsored by Masthead.
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Wow, Torstar really seems to be on a mission to bankrupt one magazine after another....
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