Time for change as publisher flags job cuts
Time has announced it is cutting several hundred jobs as the US publishing giant streamlines to adapt to a "multi-platform" media landscape.
Laura Lang, chief executive at the media unit of Time Warner, said the group was "beginning the painful process" of cutting "approximately six per cent" of its 8000 staff positions worldwide.
"With the significant and ongoing changes in our industry, we must continue to transform our company into one that is leaner, more nimble and more innately multi-platform," she said in a memo to staff.
"To make this change, we need to operate as smartly and efficiently as possible to create room for critical investments and new initiatives. These reductions are part of this important transformation process."
And in another sign of tougher economic times for the publisher, Reuters has reported that media giant is considering selling its New York headquarters and has asked real estate brokers to evaluate the building's value The company publishes 21 US magazines including its flagship Time magazine, People, Fortune and Sports Illustrated.
It 25 websites and several international magazines including global editions of Time and Fortune and publishing operations in Britain and Mexico.
Ms Lang said the job cuts would "come from all areas of Time Inc. across our locations - both domestic and international" but offered no further details.
The move comes just months after Time magazine's longtime rival Newsweek said it would end its print edition and go all-digital as part of its partnership with the Daily Beast website.
The publishing industry has been grappling with a steep drop in print advertising revenue, steadily declining circulation and the migration of readers to free news online.
According to a Reuters report, the company is considering a wide range of options for its New York headquarters, including selling the midtown Manhattan building and leasing it back, moving more employees into the building and closing other New York offices, or moving out from the building entirely, one source said.
Time Warner owns or occupies space in 15 buildings in the New York metropolitan area, with 10 in Manhattan, the source said.
The company has been evaluating its real estate needs for at least a year and hopes to finalise a plan by the end of 2013.
The office building is part of a construction project that Apollo Real Estate Advisors, now called AREA Property Partners, and related companies finished last decade. The project was originally called the AOL Time Warner Center but was renamed the Time Warner Center after the media company changed its name to distance itself from its disastrous merger with America Online.
The Time Warner Center is easily recognised by its two towers that include residential condominiums, the Mandarin Oriental Hotel and a shopping mall.
The $47 billion media giant owns the Warner Brothers movie studio, cable news channel CNN, premium TV service HBO, Turner Broadcasting and Time Inc.
When it reports fourth-quarter results next week, analysts expect revenue to be higher than a year ago, at $8.24 billion.
The stock was up 0.4 per cent to $50.28. Its shares have risen about 37 per cent since January, 2012.