News Corp. to cut minimum 150 editorial employees from U.K.'s The Times, Sunday Times publications; company's third-largest investor, Invesco, urges company to sell newspaper segment

LOS ANGELES , November 2, 2011 () – News Corporation’s News International Ltd. plans to terminate at least 150 editorial positions from U.K. publications The Times and Sunday Times in order to cut editorial costs by a respective 15% and 12%, the Guardian reported on Oct. 20.

The Times editor James Harding told staff it would cut 100 editorial positions from a total of 700 positions. Most of the reductions would come from part-time staff and voluntary redundancy will be offered to journalists.

The Sunday Times plans to let 20 positions go from the editorial staff. It will reduce its part-time workforce by 30% for a total of 50 to 100 cut positions, said editor John Witherow, the Guardian reported.

News International cited the cuts on a weak economic climate and increased newsprint costs.

Witherow revealed that the total annual editorial budget of its newspapers was around £100 million.

News Corp.’s third-largest investor, Invesco, recommended the company sell its newspaper business and double the size of its share buyback plan, according to the Sunday Telegraph, Reuters reported Oct. 23.

Invesco’s senior fund manager Kevin Holt said newspapers no longer had a competitive edge against the digital market.

Invesco holds 1.8% of News Corp.’s shares, Reuters reported.

The primary sources of this article are the Guardian, London, England, on Oct. 20, 2011 and Reuters, London, England, on Oct. 23, 2011.

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