News International print lay-offs cost £60m
By Josh Brooks Wednesday, 14 February 2007
Redundancies caused by News International's massive print overhaul have cost the publisher more than £60m so far, according to figures posted this week at Companies House.
News Corporation accounts for the year to 30 June 2006, which were filed this week, show total charges of £61.4m related to the redundancies caused by the £600m project to build new presses in Broxbourne, Knowsley and Glasgow.
The project involves the closure of the iconic Wapping print plant in central London. Around 650 print staff, or two-thirds of NI's production workforce, are due to be laid off as the new plants, which will run triple-width MAN Roland Colorman presses, come on-stream.
Times Newspapers, the division which publishes The Times and The Sunday Times, racked up a charge of £31.3m for the redundancies. This was a major element in the division's £80.7m overall loss.
However, that unit's turnover increased by almost £20m to £436m which, News Corporation said, reflected gains in circulation and advertising revenues.
News Group Newspapers, the division which publishes The Sun and the News of the World, posted a charge of £30.1m for its share of redundancy costs.
However, it recorded pre-tax profits of £291.8m, up from £59.9m the previous year. The huge rise was put down to the sale for more than £160m of a Dutch radio station, and an accounting adjustment of almost £150m related to a dividend payment from a subsidiary.
The figures were reported in this morning's edition of The Times.
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