Meredith Corp., which bought Time Inc. last year for $1.85 billion, has confirmed plans to lay off 1,200 workers by year-end and explore the sale of four key brands as the integration of the two companies continues.
“We have made significant progress executing on these initiatives since we closed on the acquisition just six weeks ago,” said Meredith President and CEO Tom Harty.
Time, Sports Illustrated, Fortune and Money are all going on the block, as had been rumored, a move that follows the sale of Time Inc. UK and Golf. That leaves People and Entertainment Weekly as prominent titles staying in the fold at Des Moines, Iowa-based Meredith, whose portfolio includes female-skewing consumer titles like Better Homes and Gardens. Of the brands being shopped, Harty said, “These are attractive properties with strong consumer reach. However, they have different target audiences and advertising bases, and we believe each brand is better suited for success with a new owner. We are pleased with the inbound interest we have received.”
The job losses are primarily in operational and business units and are aimed at achieving up to $500 million in cost savings. About 200 workers have already left, with the remaining 1,000 departing over the next 10 months. Those job losses follow the elimination of 600 positions in subscriptions and fulfillment. As part of the report on what it called its “aggressive execution” of the integration plan, Meredith said it will also launch a brand-centric sales group and strategy next week combining digital, print and other platforms into a single offering for advertisers.