Publisher Battles Unholy Trinity

Employment law

11.09.2008

An unholy trinity of falling a share price, plunging advertising revenues and evaporating sales are forcing Trinity Mirror, the largest UK regional newspaper publisher, to continue its swingeing economy drive.

Latest moves include axing seven local papers and nine offices in north Wales and the north-west of England, which will put 30 jobs at risk.

The Daily Mirror's parent company says the fastest fall in advertising income in 20 years had forced it to make an extra £20m of savings.

It is closing its Liverpool printing operation, threatening 100 jobs, and a major overhaul of its Midlands operation means 300 journalists must reapply for their jobs.

The Mirror news and picture desks will lose eight posts, while the Birmingham Post will relaunch as a compact. In July the company axed 11 subeditors at the Daily Mirror, Sunday Mirror and the People and integrated some subbing functions across the three titles.

In June the company issued a profit warning, which resulted in its share price slumping more than 28% after it said profits would be 10% lower than expected this year.

Meanwhile, it is to hold talks at the conciliation service Acas with the National Union of Journalists over staff concerns at the company's Glasgow-based titles.

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James Wright from law firm Irwin Mitchell's employment team said: "Employers contemplating large scale redundancies must comply with collective consultation requirements in addition to the usual dismissal processes. Such a collective process can give rise to liabilities and delay the implementation of any restructuring if not properly managed."