The Toronto Star is outsourcing its advertising sales to Metro English Canada, a wholly owned division of parent company Torstar Corp., as part of a series of restructuring moves that will see about 72 jobs lost at the flagship newspaper.
“Metro is well positioned to offer this because it has both a regional audience complementary to that of the Star as well as audiences across the country. It is also growing audiences and revenue on both print and digital platforms,” said publisher John Cruickshank in a staff memo.
Staff in advertising, editorial, finance and administration are affected by the cuts, including switchboard and messenger functions. The company is cutting positions in its custom content departments, which produce editorial copy underwritten by marketers.
The moves are a response to continuing softness in the advertising market. Third quarter revenues for the company’s media division were down to $227.4-million, down about $20-million from the same time last year. Ad sales at the Star fell 16 per cent over the summer.