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Scripps cutting 300 jobs, joining list of companies to have layoffs

Q4 earnings disappoint investors
Posted at 11:46 AM, Feb 24, 2023

CINCINNATI — E.W. Scripps Co. will eliminate 300 jobs in the next 12 months as part of a national restructuring aimed at reducing annual expenses by $40 million. The cuts represent about 5% of its 5,600-employee workforce, according to the company's most recent annual report to shareholders.

The Cincinnati-based media company, parent company of WCPO 9 News, announced the job cuts as part of its fourth-quarter earnings release.

“The reorganization work will include the centralization of some services and the consolidation of layers of management across the company,” CEO Adam Symson said in a press release. “We expect to realize savings of at least $40 million. Our end goal, however, is not just a more efficient structure but a smarter one, designed to use the breadth of our assets to accelerate the company’s growth.”

The company reported a $73 million profit on revenue of $680.9 million for the quarter ending Dec. 31. That revenue was $9.8 million less than Wall Street analysts were expecting, while its earnings-per-share performance of $0.84 was 17 cents lower than expectations.

Scripps shares opened 10% lower when trading began Friday. The stock closed at $12.58, down 13.5% from Thursday's close.

Scripps joins a list of more than 80 U.S. companies to announce layoffs in 2023, a trend that has eliminated 93,000 jobs at tech companies so far, according to Crunchbase.

In response to WCPO's questions, Scripps Senior Vice President Carolyn Micheli said the company hasn't determined whether its 500 local employees will be impacted by the job cuts.

"Our focus is on redundant positions across both divisions and the corporate office, particularly in management," Micheli said. "We remain committed to providing quality journalism, and preserving our news-gathering efforts is a priority in the reorganization work."

Micheli also stressed that the restructuring is more about growth than cost cutting.

"We see great opportunity to grow through live sports rights, local and national news, the broad reach of our national entertainment brands and the opportunity afforded by ATSC 3.0 technology to provide datacasting to other industries," she said. "We need to make sure we have the right people in the right places to act on these opportunities."