Nielsen Explores Companywide Editorial Reorg; Layoffs Coming

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imageB2B publisher Nielsen Business Media is putting together a new content strategy for its 40 magazine properties, Folio reports. Nielsen, which publishes such titles as Adweek, Mediaweek, The Hollywood Reporter, Editor & Publisher and Billboard, told Folio that the strategy could involve the creation of a “content center across the organization.” The decision could come this month.

Citing two unidentified sources, Folio says that Nielsen might combine the news desks at Adweek, Mediaweek and Brandweek magazines. But two sources I spoke to — who agreed only to speak on background — insist the idea of merging those three pubs is not on the table. It has long been rumored that Nielsen would consolidate those titles and create a broader book that would more closely resemble rival B2B publisher Crain Communications’ Advertising Age.

One high level source I spoke to said that at most, the new strategy would involve the combination of copy desk or assignment desk functions, but the respective reporting desks would remain distinct — at least for now. This source also said that layoffs are coming to the group: “Editorial has been kept in the dark about how many jobs would be cut, but they are coming.” A Nielsen rep told me only: “There are no plans to merge any of the publications at this time, nor has a decision been made on any layoffs.”

Back in April, trying to deal with an already weakening economy, Nielsen cut 40-50 jobs, mostly in editorial, as ad revenues plunged and the economic situation in general worsened. And last November, Adweek began cutting back from printing 47 issues annually to 36. Also, talk that Nielsen has been looking to sell THR persist. That magazine laid off 10 staffers in July.

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John Papas

Just a note, they already gave notice to a number of people. I am not 100% clear on the numbers but at least 20-30 people were given termination dates.

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