Archant plans move out of Norwich headquarters after 50 years

Archant is looking to move out of its headquarters in Norwich where it has been based for almost 50 years, the regional publisher has announced.

According to a memo to staff, seen by Press Gazette, the Prospect House building is said to be “starting to show its age” and is now “too big” for company’s needs.

More than 500 staff are based at the site in Norfolk, which previously housed its printing presses before the opening of the group’s Thorpe Print Centre outside the city in 1996.

This year alone Archant has announced a number of redundancies and title closures, as well as the sale of its local TV station.

Archant chief executive Jeff Henry told staff: “The building is starting to show its age and has become too big for our current needs.

“Maintenance costs are increasing and the heating, air conditioning and windows all need replaced.

“The last major refurbishment was carried out ten years ago at which time we expected to be able to extend the building’s useful life for seven years.”

He said the company was starting a “review process to consider our future space needs in Norwich” with a recommendation for a new headquarters expected in late Spring 2018.

Henry said Archant had a “strong preference” to remain “in the centre of Norwich” and that it was likely the regional publisher would remain in Prospect House until “at least 2019”.

Prospect House is home to Archant’s flagship regional daily newspaper the Eastern Daily Press.

It is also the base of local TV station Mustard TV, which Archant said last month it was planning to sell on after it had failed to make a profit with redundancies to follow as a result.

Archant’s interim financial results for the first half of 2017 saw it declare profits down 46 per cent year-on-year.

The group said it had cut almost 100 staff (a 7 per cent drop) since the start of the year to more than 1,250 full-time equivalent employees.

Picture: Google Maps

Comments

7 thoughts on “Archant plans move out of Norwich headquarters after 50 years”

  1. No great surprise to be honest as this is the last of the big assets they have to sell off
    With so many staff laid off, editorial teams reduced, advertising revenues crashed to all time lows with ad managers and reps citing poor content and low copy sales as the reason,production work outsourced on the cheap to India and some staff working remotely there’s no need for a building of that size for a company downsizing in an attempt to claw back vast losses, so the writings been on the wall for this move for ages, I’m just amazed there’s still 500 people working there, it again emphasises just how many managers and non productive people are in the building if it takes that many staff to produce such an abysmal performance as the one the chairman had to report to shareholders a couple of weeks back.

    I don’t know about the building needing a radical makeover I think the whole company needs a complete review and shakedown top to bottom as they cannot carry on much longer with such appalling revenues against such overwhelming costs.

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