Express & Star publisher to cut around 90 jobs

The Midland News Association, publisher of the UK’s largest regional paper Wolverhampton’s Express & Star, is understood to be planning to cut around 90 staff.

The family-owned company, which also owns the Shropshire Star and a string of local weeklies, is understood to be cutting around a tenth of the company’s 900-strong workforce.

It’s not yet known how many editorial jobs are likely to come under threat as a result of the cuts or where the axe will fall across offices in the Black Country, Staffordshire and Shropshire.

The company said cuts were being made as a result of poor trading conditions.

Managers met with staff yesterday to outline the planned cuts and have entered into a consultation period with employees.

Alan Harris, MNA managing director, said in a statement: “Like every other newspaper publisher, the MNA is facing very difficult trading conditions and there seems to be no sign of improvement.

“If we are to continue to invest for the future in our publications, both in print and online, then we must make some cost savings.

“The board fully understand that this is a very difficult time for all staff and we are doing our very best to keep everybody informed of what is happening.”

The MNA set in motion its last significant cut to staffing levels in October 2008, which resulted in around 135 employees leaving the business.

News of these latest cuts comes just days after the Express & Star started to charge for subscriptions to its digital editions.

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