Rogers Axes Print Editions, Reduces Others in Publishing Retreatby
Maclean’s, Chatelaine to decrease publishing frequency
Canadian Business, MoneySense, Sportnet to go digital only
Rogers Communications Inc. is pulling back from its magazine business, shuttering some titles, selling others and reducing the frequency of its most-popular magazines, dealing a major blow to Canada’s already-struggling publishing industry.
“Maclean’s,” Canada’s best-known public affairs magazine, will shift from weekly publication to monthly while “Chatelaine” and “Today’s Parent” will move to six times a year. The print editions of “Sportsnet,” “MoneySense” and “Canadian Business” will be cut completely and become online-only. French-language titles will be sold, though a buyer has not yet been found, Rogers said in a statement Friday.
Shares in the Toronto-based telecommunications and media company were little changed at C$55.96 at 11:49 a.m. and have gained 17 percent this year.
Rogers has been struggling to maintain media revenue as advertisers continue their flight to the internet from traditional TV and print ads. It cut 200 media jobs earlier this year in a bid to save costs. The company isn’t alone. Newspaper and magazine owners including Postmedia Network Canada Corp. and Torstar Corp. have all made deep cuts in the last year.
A spokeswoman for Rogers didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment on whether job cuts would accompany the latest pull-back. The company said it would invest C$35 million ($27 million) in its digital properties, which reached 3.8 million people in Canada monthly in the first half of 2016, up 30 percent from the year before, it said in the statement.
“It’s been clear for some time now that Canadians are moving from print to digital, and our job is to keep pace with the changes our audiences are demanding,” Steve Maich, head of digital content at Rogers Media, said in the statement.