Dallas Morning News lays off 43 as company struggles with revenue declines
Dallas, TX - As the newspaper industry struggles to stem declines in revenue, The Dallas Morning News on Monday laid off 43 employees in its newsroom and other parts of the company.
The cuts include about 20 writers, editors, photographers and newsroom support personnel. The overall staff reduction represents about 4 percent of the 978 employees working for The News’ parent company, A. H. Belo Corporation.
The layoffs are intended to position The News for long-term success, said president and publisher Grant Moise.
Print revenue declines from advertising in recent months have been bigger than drops in circulation revenue, which has been falling mostly from home delivery and single copy newspaper sales. The company has focused on building its digital subscriptions.
“After considerable thought and analysis, our management team has determined that our business in the future is largely supported by subscription revenue and the need for more aggressive investment in our digital products,” Moise said.
The publicly traded company is due soon to report its fourth quarter financial results. Through the first nine months of the year, revenue declined 18.9 percent to $149.77 million from $184.55 million in the same period a year ago.
The company’s loss widened to $5.58 million, or 26 cents a share, in the nine months that ended Sept. 30 from a net loss of $2.66 million, or 13 cents a share, the prior year.
“We are rebalancing our financial resources to support these new foundational elements so we are positioned for success and can deliver quality journalism for many years to come,” Moise said.
The job losses are part of a company-wide reorganization that includes “investing in technology platforms that support subscribers’ online experience and enhance customer service at every level,” said Katy Murray, chief financial officer of A. H. Belo.
“In 2019, we are committed to aligning the company's investments and resources with the goal of becoming the best possible subscriber-first digital organization,” Murray said.
At the end of the third quarter, the company had $58.47 million in cash and no debt. It also has its former headquarters building at 508 Young St. in downtown Dallas up for sale. A sale agreement for the building was terminated after Amazon chose New York and Washington, D.C., to share its second headquarters site.
Source: Dallas Morning News