Alma Media Corporation Stock Exchange Release 20 March 2015, 10:00 a.m. (EET)
ALMA MEDIA PLANNING TO CONSOLIDATE OPERATIONS OF LAPLAND NEWSPAPERS
Alma Media is planning to carry out significant changes in the production of its two daily newspapers published in Lapland, namely Lapin Kansa and Pohjolan Sanomat. According to the plan, the two newspapers’ editorial staffs, media sales and production would be consolidated so that, beginning from June 2015, Alma would be effectively publishing one 6-day newspaper, Lapin Kansa, in Lapland. It would have another edition, with partly different contents, called Pohjolan Sanomat, distributed in the Kemi–Tornio region.
At the same time, the online and mobile services of these newspapers will be revamped. The online content would be available only to subscribers. In addition, a new weekend supplement, called Sunnuntai, would be issued together with the Saturday paper. Furthermore, on Sundays an entirely new digital paper would be published.
These planned structural changes aim to achieve a sustainable improvement in the poor financial situation of the newspapers, which has been going on for a long time. In Lapland, where the distances are long, the distribution costs have been increasing at an uncontrollable rate. The planned changes aim to secure the newspapers’ future. By consolidating the functions the company would be able to create a strong and vital provincial newspaper, the seventh largest in Finland by the number of readers.
The employees of Lapin Kansa, Uusi Rovaniemi, Pohjolan Sanomat and Lounais-Lappi have been today invited to statutory personnel negotiations in respect of the operational change plan. The employer estimates that, if the plan is implemented, potential repercussions may lead to staff reductions of no more than 30 man-years for the Lapland newspapers. The statutory personnel negotiations concern approximately 130 employees.
As of April 2014, Alma Media’s Lapland newspapers have been printed in Oulu, at Kaleva’s print, and their distribution is carried out by Alma Manu. In 2014, the circulation of Lapin Kansa was 27,841 (decrease of -4%) and it had 74,000 readers (no change). The circulation of Pohjolan Sanomat in 2014 was 15,303 (decrease of -6.9%) and it had 43,000 readers (increase of 4.9%).
In addition to Lapin Kansa and Pohjolan Sanomat, Regional Media, part of Alma Media, publishes two other provincial papers, namely Aamulehti and Satakunnan Kansa. The company’s newspaper portfolio also includes local and town papers around Finland. Regional Media also includes the printing and distribution company Alma Manu Oy.
For more information, please contact:
Senior Vice President, Regional Media
Tel. +358 50 4354159
Editor-in-Chief, Lapin Kansa
Tel. +358 50 3430379