Sun Media to cut 600 jobs

Tue Dec 16, 2008 1:06pm EST
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By Wojtek Dabrowski

TORONTO (Reuters) - Quebecor Inc's Sun Media newspaper unit said on Tuesday it will cut 600 jobs because of the economic downturn and problems in the print media industry.

The cuts represent 10 percent of the work force of Canada's biggest newspaper publisher, not counting mail room employees. Sun Media said it expects the move to lead to restructuring costs of about C$14 million ($11.5 million).

The layoffs are the latest in Canada's media industry. Last month, Canwest Global Communications Corp, Canada's biggest media company, cut 210 workers at its broadcast operations and another 350 at its publishing division.

Privately held television broadcaster and Canwest rival CTV Inc cut 105 jobs in November. Torstar Corp cut 270 jobs across its stable of urban and regional newspapers in the first nine months of the year.

Media companies rely on advertising revenue and as the economy slows, many advertisers are expected to trim their spending. This means lower revenue for the media groups.

"The speed at which the current economic environment is deteriorating forces us to make difficult decisions at this time of the year," Quebecor Chief Executive Pierre Karl Peladeau said in a statement.

"The news industry is being revolutionized and we have to adapt if we want to remain an industry leader."

Sun Media has 43 paid-circulation and free dailies in Canada's biggest urban markets and more than 200 community newspapers, shopping guides and other specialty publications.   Continued...