Future Publishing – of PC Gamer, Edge, and GameMaster – has posted £30.6m ($50.4M) loss for the first half of the year and announced that they will be cutting 170 UK-based jobs.
Future is also planning on shutting down Edge Online, CVG and the official Playstation, Xbox, and Nintendo magazines websites, with the division of games operations being relocated from the London offices to the lower cost offices in Bath, England. Future will also be selling off their sporting and crafting magazines to Immediate Media for a reported £24m to pay off debts and operating cost while Future undergoes restructuring.
Newly acquired CEO Zillah Byng-Maddick – appointed on April first to facilitate the company restructuring – has released a statement in the wake of the restructuring and layoffs.
“Clearly, Future’s print revenues have continued to decline, but our consumers are highly-engaged and new revenue streams are available.”
“Our revised business model is based on the virtuous circle of engagement in two core content areas: reviews (when consumers are looking to make product purchase decisions and where we can derive e-commerce revenues) and ‘how to’ opportunities (when consumers want to learn more and are prepared to pay us to help them do so, through tutorials, events etc). These were the foundations of Future’s initial success in the 1980s, and they will remain at the core of our strategic focus through the next phase of transformation.
“The streamlining of our consumer strategy – with an increased focus on the consumer technology market and a clear channel-neutral approach – allows for a simplification and standardisation of our digital advertising platforms and opportunities. Where appropriate we will also look to rationalise brand activity online in areas where consumers are less interested in our brands but discover and value our content that reaches them through the strength of our search engine optimisation.
“The transformation programme has already begun, with the disposal of our Sport and Craft titles. In addition a consultation process began in mid-May, involving all staff, a reflection of the extent to which all areas of the business are affected by the evolving working practices.The proposals reflect a functional approach to reorganizing the business: with all our content and marketing staff grouped under one director, focused on creating industry-leading content that connects with our consumers. Likewise, we are grouping all commercial and consumer revenue activity under respective directors. I propose to transform our current IT division into a focused digital Product and Technology division, creating standardised platforms for all our digital offerings. I have also re-organised and strengthened my leadership team to reflect this new functional approach.”