Sun Media cutting 360 jobs and closing 11 papers -

Sun Media cutting 360 jobs and closing 11 papers


Adrian Wyld/CP

Sun Media Corp. said Tuesday it is cutting 360 jobs and closing 11 publications across the country, including its 24 Hours free daily newspapers in Ottawa, Calgary and Edmonton.

The newspaper publisher said the plan is expected to yield annual savings of approximately $55 million.

“We don’t have a choice, because if we don’t do this we won’t survive,” said Martin Tremblay, a spokesman for Sun Media’s parent company, Montreal-based Quebecor Inc. (TSX:QBR.B)

“If we want to succeed in the future, we’re going to have to invest more money in digital and the website and trying to bring in new, young readers.”

A memo circulated to staff said the cuts represented about eight per cent of the company’s workforce.

“Our vision is to continue to be the leading news media provider in Canada while being the most profitable in the industry,” the note from chief operating office Julie Tremblay said.

“This means that we will continue to focus on great journalism, hard hitting information that reports on issues that matter most to people. It also means that we will continue to partner with our advertisers to offer them innovative solutions in reaching customers and furthering success.”

Sun Media said it made the decision to close the three 24 Hours newspapers because it wants to focus on a single urban newspaper in each market, except Montreal and Toronto, where it says large transit systems warrant publishing the free papers.

The company will also continue to publish 24 Hours in Vancouver, where Sun Media doesn’t have another daily newspaper.

In addition to the 24 Hours papers, Sun Media is closing eight newspapers in smaller communities in several provinces including three in Quebec.

The closures include Le Magazine Saint-Lambert, Le Progres de Bellechasse and L’Action Regionale in Monteregie, Que., the Lindsay Daily Post and the Midland Free Press in Ontario, the Meadow Lake Progress in Saskatchewan and the Lac du Bonnet Leader and the Beausejour Review in Manitoba.

But Tremblay said the layoffs will be sprinkled across the country, not just at the papers that are being shut down.

Paul Morse, president of the Southern Ontario News Media Guild, which represents workers at 13 Sun Media papers in Ontario, said 15 of the union’s members have lost their jobs.

Five are at the Toronto Sun, five at the St. Catharines Standard, three at the Brantford Expositor, one at the London Free Press and one at the Ottawa Sun, Morse said.

Morse worried about the affect the layoffs will have on Canadian journalism.

“One of the reasons that we enjoy the freedoms that we have in this country and the standard of life that we have in this country is because we have a press that operates independently and professionally,” he said.

“If we lose that, it’ll have a major impact on our lives as we know it. It’s a very, very slippery slope.”

Quebecor also announced Tuesday that Wendy Metcalfe, editor-in-chief of the St. Catharines Standard, will become the new editor-in-chief of the Toronto Sun.

She replaces James Wallace, who stepped down on Monday.

Declining advertising revenues have hit the newspaper industry hard.

Quebecor warned earlier this year that it would not rule out further cost-cutting efforts to address the drop facing its newspaper business.

Last year, it announced plans to cut some 500 jobs at its Sun Media newspaper division, a move that included the closure of two production facilities in Ottawa and Kingston.

Sun Media has 36 paid-circulation daily newspapers and three free dailies as well as almost 200 community newspapers, shopping guides and other specialty publications.

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Sun Media cutting 360 jobs and closing 11 papers

  1. Die, Sun Media, die.

    • It’s just the 24 Hour newpapers and some small dailies. WAsted peeing yourself over nothing

      • Peeing on myself is never wasted.

        And it’s the start of the throes of death, brian, so let me enjoy it.

        • Globe and Mail,Toronto Star,Calgary Herald all have had similar downsizing within the recent past. Print editions of newspapers are going the way of steam engines, black and white TVS and coal stoves. Used to purchase five print newspapers a week now I am down to only one on weekends. I am not alone

  2. Hmmmmmmm, when was the last time I read the paper version of MacLeans? Sorry folks but the print media is going the same way as black nd white TVs and the steam engine.

  3. Good.

    • Thrilled about all the local reporters and those involved in the production of the 24 Hour publications losing their jobs. Classy!

      • They write trash…boot!

        • Reading your comments so do you Ciao!

          • Gawd Mouland, speak English. I don’t do German.

          • No you just speak Stupid

          • Like you did when you swore on the bible Ms.Atheist Hypocrite

          • Mouland appeared not to know what the phrase meant….so I posted a photo to show him

            What it has to do with you, I don’t know.

          • I’m not Mouland but I know what a two faced hypocrite looks like Phony

          • Mmm I’ll bet you’d call Harper that when he wears a head covering and sock feet at Sikh ceremonies eh?

          • Both my boyfriend and I have attended a Sikh ceremony have you?

          • And so you picked that particular time to get into a row about religion, and cause a scene, did you?

  4. WHO TO BLAME , companies in Canada are aloud to TAKEOVER like Sun media and then slashes in jobs ,retirement etc etc for benifits of share older and a little bit of money in bank account of new owner (forget about workers/jobs/futur or income taxes paid by workers ,let them go on UE and welfare paid by the communities.

  5. A number of years ago the Liberals funded The Journal and shut down a number of local CBC TV stations . In my city the local TV station was closed throwing eight employees out of work including three over age 55. I know that some of the couch dwellers that live on this sight are getting joy that is Sun Media. But remember its not people like Levant losing his job its the single mother who was helping producing the 24 hour paper or the cub reporter in the small town weekly that are suffering the most. I thought you progressives were warm and caring; how do some of you stand to look in the mirror and not vomit?