Media General Eliminating 45 Broadcast Jobs, Hiring in Interactive Division

Media General’s reduction of 750 fulltime positions—mostly in its publishing division—will include 45 jobs in the broadcast division and an addition of 60 new jobs in its interactive media division.

So said Richmond, Va.-based company as it reported another tough month. April broadcast revenues dropped 8 percent from April 2007 to $30.6 million. Total revenues for the company are down 10.9 percent compared to last April.

“Our efforts to reduce operating costs have necessarily included personnel,” President and CEO Marshall N. Morton said in a statement.

By the third quarter of the year, he said, the company will reduce its fulltime equivalents from 6,900 to 6,150, with annualized cost savings of $40 million.

The company said the new interactive media hires are the result of “the company’s focus on direct online sales initiatives and a Web-First/Continuous News approach.”

“In addition, we anticipate further improvement in profitability through reduced newsprint consumption and lower discretionary spending as well as new revenue development initiatives,” Morton said.

Total company revenues dropped more than 10 percent to $78.7 million from $88.3 million in April 2007. The year-over-year decline was primarily attributable to lower publishing revenues, driven mostly by continued weakness in classified advertising, especially in the Tampa, Fla., market, the company said.

In the interactive media division, revenues rose 15.5 percent due to a 42 percent boost in local advertising and revenues generated during the first month of the company’s ownership of on March 31. Local news page views were up 59 percent at in Tampa.

Media General owns 25 daily newspapers and 22 TV stations.