Monday 6 April 2020 8:25 am

Mirror publisher Reach cuts wages and furloughs a fifth of its staff

Dairy Mirror publisher Reach has today announced its employees will take a pay cut during the coronavirus crisis, as it continues to operate all of its regional and national titles.

The publisher said some members of the senior editorial and management team will take a 20 per cent cut as part of cost-cutting measures. Other Reach employees will take a 10 per cent reduction in pay.

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One in five Reach employees will be furloughed under the government’s coronavirus job protection scheme in the UK, and the company said it will also register for the temporary wage subsidy scheme in Ireland.

Last month the publisher warned that its advertising revenue and print circulation would be hit during the outbreak. Reach said advertisers would defer campaigns, while circulation would be hit by social distancing measures and store closures.

The firm also warned that its events division, which runs awards and exhibitions across a range of sectors, would suffer from the pandemic.

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Reach, which also publishes the Daily Express, joins a host of firms cancelling their dividend to shore up their balance sheets during the coronavirus outbreak.

“While the board recognises the importance of dividends to shareholders, given the uncertainty around the current crisis and the fact that the company is accessing the government’s job protection scheme it has been decided that it would be inappropriate to pay a dividend at this time,” the group said in a statement.

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Reach insisted the business came into 2020 with a “robust” balance sheet position and confirmed it has “adequate” liquidity.

Chief executive Jim Mullen said: “It remains difficult to predict the duration and long term impact of the crisis on our sector so it is key we take proactive measures now on cost to protect jobs and the Reach business for the long term.”

Shares are down 7.22 per cent.

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