NZME has requested all staff on a salary of more than $50,000 per year take a 15 per cent pay cut for 12 weeks.

This comes as New Zealand media continues to struggle with the impact of Covid-19 on the advertising market.

"With the Alert Level 4 lockdown in place, NZME is expecting April 2020 advertising revenues to be approximately 50 per cent lower than April 2019," NZME chief executive Michael Boggs said in an NZX announcement today.

READ MORE:
Covid 19 coronavirus: MediaWorks CEO asks all staff to take 15 per cent pay cut
Premium - Covid 19 coronavirus: NZ telcos' big roaming revenue hit
Covid 19 coronavirus: Why marketers need to find 'apocalypse vans' during the lockdown
Premium - Coronavirus: Hospitality revenues falling fast, claims Government rescue package 'does nothing'

Advertisement

"While it remains impossible to predict with any accuracy the impact of the pandemic on NZME's full-year financial performance, it is anticipated that revenue will be significantly down on the corresponding period in 2019."

NZME, publisher of the Herald, has already taken a number of steps to cut costs amid the crisis.

This has included a restructure which has seen a reduction of more than 200 positions, including redundancies and the removal of vacant positions across the business.

Company directors and chief executive Michael Boggs reduced their salaries by 20 per cent from March.

The company has also requested staff to take annual leave before July, temporarily stopped the production of some products, and ceased broadcasting Radio Sport.

"We have left no stone unturned in the hunt for opportunities to reduce costs and cash outflows," said Boggs in an email to staff.

The request from NZME matches similar measures taken by MediaWorks, which asked its staff in early April to take a 15 per cent pay cut or face widespread redundancies.

The most significant blow to New Zealand media so far has been in the magazine industry, where Bauer pulled the plug on the local market earlier this month.

Advertisement

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has expressed concern about the state of New Zealand media and confirmed in the weekend that discussions were under way at Cabinet level for added assistance for New Zealand media companies that have seen a big drop in advertising revenue.

She did not go into details but said the pandemic had shown the importance of a media industry that provided trusted news and information.

"We need to make sure they [media firms] are also viable post coronavirus," she said.

Perspective: with Heather du Plessis-Allan - Radio Sport is a casualty of Covid-19.