Publisher fends off job cuts by asking staff to take unpaid leave
Incisive the latest media group to respond to advertising slump with initiative that could save £1m
Sunday 15 March 2009
Incisive, the heavily indebted private equity-owned media group, has asked its 1,800 employees to take a week's unpaid leave to avoid redundancies.
The Accountancy Age and Computing publisher has asked staff to take the week off between Christmas and New Year, and will average out the cost to the pay packet over the financial year. The group will not then be forcing employees to take a big hit in just one month.
Tim Weller, Incisive's chief executive, said: "What we have done, in keeping with a number of our peers, is ask staff to take a week off unpaid instead of making redundancies. This will minimise job losses and we will deduct pay over a 12-month period."
The company employs 700 people in the UK, 100 in Hong Kong and the remainder mostly in North America. It is estimated that the move could save the business about £1m, although Mr Weller declined to comment on the figure. He informed staff of the plan on Thursday.
Incisive, which was bought out in 2006 by private equity giant Apax Partners in a £208m deal, breached its debt terms in December. Apax is reportedly considering pumping cash into the group to ease the concerns of the banks. Incisive has around £400m in debt on its balance sheet.
Rival business-to-business media group Euromoney Institutional Investor, which publishes around 100 titles, launched a similar drive last week. Staff earning more than £25,000 a year have been asked to take a week off unpaid, which will be spread over pay cheques from June to December.
The media sector has been hit hard by the credit crunch, particularly by the decline in advertising revenue and job ads. The Independent on Sunday and daily sister title The Independent have been involved in a redundancy process. Independent News & Media chief executive Anthony O'Reilly announced his departure from the group on Friday.
Channel Five and ITV, the terres-trial broadcasters, cut nearly 700 jobs between them earlier this month. The future of the whole industry is being reviewed by the Government.
Johnston Press, the regional newspaper group that publishes The Scotsman, confirmed a debt burden of £476.8m in its annual results last week. The company's share price closed at 5.3p on Friday, valuing Johnston at less than £33m. Many observers would like a change to primary legislation allowing major regional press groups to merge, which is currently viewed as anti-competitive.
KPMG, the big four accountant, has been appointed to advise Johnston on refinancing the debt pile this summer.
KPMG has had its own problems. The firm has received applications from 85 per cent of its 11,500 partners and staff for its "Flexible Futures" programme. This offers an alternative to redundancies, including sabbaticals on reduced pay.
- 1 'Not suppost to cry': 9-year-old lists the worst things about being a boy
- 2 To help fuel their propaganda machine against the poor, our government has now decided to redefine the word 'welfare'
- 3 Anti-gay hate preacher accidentally tweets 4,000 followers cartoon clip of him 'confessing' to be a 'homosexual sodomite'
- 4 Woman opens professional cuddling shop – gets 10,000 customers in first week
- 5 Grayson Perry: London needs affordable housing because 'rich people don't create culture'
Ryan Gosling granted temporary restraining order against a woman 'convinced she was his twin flame'
Jennifer Lawrence sings in new The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Pt 1 clip on YouTube
Anti-gay hate preacher accidentally tweets 4,000 followers cartoon clip of him 'confessing' to be a 'homosexual sodomite'
Woman opens professional cuddling shop – gets 10,000 customers in first week
Grayson Perry: London needs affordable housing because 'rich people don't create culture'
Rochester by-election: Ukip gains second MP as Tory defector Mark Reckless holds seat
'Beast of Bolsover' Dennis Skinner takes Ukip MP Mark Reckless to task moments after he is sworn in
Rochester by-election: Labour MP Emily Thornberry resigns after posting white van and England flags tweet
France 'blocks' Russian sailors from boarding a warship
Revealed: How the world gets rich – from privatising British public services
Myleene Klass: Ed Miliband 'strikes back' by comparing UK's need for Labour's mansion tax to Hear'Say track
iJobs Money & Business
Voluntary Only - Expenses Reimbursed: Reach Volunteering: Age Concern Slough a...
Voluntary Only - Expenses Reimbursed: Reach Volunteering: Crossroads Care is s...
£20000 - £25000 per annum + OTE £35,000: SThree: We consistently strive to be ...
£50000 - £90000 per annum + benefits: Ampersand Consulting LLP: Markit EDM (CA...