After dropping 768 last year, Johnston Press may axe more staff

More job losses are likely at regional publisher Johnston Press, which today reported a 56% fall in pre-tax profits last year, to Pounds 43 m.

The publisher of the Scotsman and Yorkshire Evening Post said like-for-like ad revenues fell by 26.5%, while total group revenues plunged by almost 20% to £428m. The company, which was reporting year-end results for the 53 weeks to 2 January, said that it has closed five papers last year and that 768 staff left the company through a mix of compulsory and voluntary redundancies, retirements and natural attrition.

But unlike rival Trinity Mirror, which closed or sold 30 titles and had 1,700 job losses last year, Johnston Press did not say it would call a halt to job losses.

Johnston Press financial director Stuart Paterson said new subbing systems, including the controversial Atex content management system, which has led to planned industrial action in Blackpool, would continue to roll out. "New systems are going into the business and I would like to think that we would end 2010 with less people than when we started."

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