Gemstar-TV Guide Sheds 38 Staffers

Cost-Cutting Move Follows Rate-Base Cut, Ad-Page Declines

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NEW YORK (AdAge.com) -- Gemstar-TV Guide today laid off 38 people from across departments and offices, including 24 TV Guide staffers and 14 people from the Gemstar data-services group, in a bid to cut costs before the new year begins.
Gemstar-TV Guide is reducing staff to cut costs.
Gemstar-TV Guide is reducing staff to cut costs. Credit: Hoag Levins

Annual review
"This is the time of year when you do an annual review of your business," said Eileen M. Murphy, a spokeswoman at parent Gemstar-TV Guide. "This is a difficult marketplace in the publishing business and the media business at large. And we needed to make some decisions about how to operate the magazine as cost-effectively as possible."

TV Guide still employs several hundred people, meaning its 24 layoffs affect less than 10% of the staff, Ms. Murphy said.

Radical change
TV Guide has undergone a radical change in the last year, going to a standard size from its familiar digest format and reducing its rate base to 3.2 million from 9 million. One result is that ad pages aren't exactly comparable to last year's. But TV Guide did run 726 ad pages from January through October, according to the Publishers Information Bureau. The old digest-sized TV Guide ran 1,428 ad pages through the same period in 2005.
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