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Guardian redundancy scheme reopened

Wednesday July 18th 2012

Journalists at the Guardian and Observer newspapers have been asked to consider taking voluntary redundancy after they reported losses of more than £40 million in the last year.

Staff were told the two papers and their website, collectively known as Guardian News and Media (GNM), had an operating loss of £44.2 million in 2011/12.

The papers, which have pioneered an open access approach to their journalism and do not charge online readers, reported a 16.3% rise in digital revenue to £45.7 million in 2011/12 and saw their online audience grow 38% to 67.8 million monthly unique browsers from March 2011 to March 2012.

A spokeswoman for the company said it was "on course" to save £25 million by the end of a five-year programme to focus more on online publishing by 2016/17, adding: "As part of that, in editorial we aim to reduce costs by £7 million to fund investment and GNM has this week re-opened the voluntary redundancy programme for editorial."

The spokeswoman said "investment in digital platforms and set-up costs for the five-year transformation programme" was partly responsible for the operating loss.

Editor-in-Chief Alan Rusbridger said: "Having the foresight to start exploring digital platforms as early as 1999 has given us a great foundation on which to build a secure future for the Guardian. This has been an extraordinary year for our journalism, all the more so for having the largest ever audience for our work."

Copyright Press Association 2012

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