Canada's Rogers Communications to cut 200 jobs in media unit

Tue Jan 26, 2016 9:10am EST
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(This Jan. 25 story corrects to say 200, not 400, jobs cut)

TORONTO (Reuters) - Rogers Communications Inc (RCIb.TO: Quote) said on Monday it would cut around 200 media jobs starting in February, the latest Canadian media outlet to fire staff in a tough market dealing with sliding advertising and the migration of audiences online.

Like other Canadian media companies, Rogers has lost viewers to international players like Netflix Inc (NFLX.O: Quote), which have eaten into the viewership of traditional linear TV with on-demand video delivered online.

The cuts - affecting jobs in conventional TV, radio, publishing and back-office operations - account for 4 percent of Rogers' media arm's workforce, the company said in a statement.

While the media group provides around 15 percent of revenue at Rogers, which also sells phone, television and Internet services, it contributes only a sliver of operating profit.

Rogers operates the City and Omni television networks as well as a network of TV stations and radio stations, publications and websites. It also owns the Toronto Blue Jays professional baseball team and holds long-term rights to broadcast National Hockey League games.

A Rogers spokeswoman said NHL coverage, which has "contributed positively to the bottom line", would not be affected.

The company, which is due to report quarterly earnings on Wednesday, did not disclose the financial impact of the move.

The Rogers news follow word last week that Postmedia Network Canada Corp (PNCa.TO: Quote), the country's largest newspaper chain, had cut 90 journalist jobs, or 8 percent of its editorial workforce, as it merged tabloid and broadsheet newsrooms in four major cities in order to cut costs.   Continued...