Dennis Publishing to cut more than 60 jobs after ad and event revenues hit by coronavirus

Dennis Publishing is planning make more than 60 redundancies after its advertising and events revenues “deteriorated” during the Covid-19 crisis.

The publisher of current affairs, lifestyle, technology and car brands including The Week and Viz has put 122 of its 480 staff members into a consultation process.

Press Gazette understands that more than half of those 122 roles are likely to be cut – about 15% of the company workforce in total.

Two-thirds of the company’s revenues now come from subscriptions, which are understood to have remained steady during the pandemic.

But the other third in advertising, events and retail have taken a significant hit.

In a statement, Dennis said: “The impact of Covid-19 has been significant for the publishing sector. Although we are confident that Dennis has a bright future, we have not been immune to its economic impact.

“We have worked hard to reduce our costs and found savings in several areas; however, the outlook for our advertising, events and retail businesses, which accounts for approximately a third of the group’s revenues, has deteriorated due to the pandemic. Other revenue areas of the business have been mostly unaffected.

“As a result, this week we will begin a redundancy consultation process here in the UK. We are fully committed to supporting employees in impacted groups throughout this period and ensuring that this process is fair and transparent.”

It is not known at this stage whether any titles could be at risk of closure as a result.

Dennis Publishing was bought by private equity firm Exponent in 2018, with proceeds going to a woodland charity established by the publisher’s late founder Felix Dennis.

The company’s latest available accounts on Companies House show it had a turnover of £133.2m in 2018 and profit before tax of £7.3m.

Dennis claims to reach more than 50m unique users and sell more than 2.5m magazines across its 30 brands every month.

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