Significant restructuring at Naspers is leading to a major reshuffle of the editors of Afrikaans newspaper titles, writes Andile Makholwa.
Peet Kruger, currently editor of Beeld, is becoming editor in chief of Beeld, Die Burger and Rapport. Tim du Plessis has been moved from Rapport to become editor of Beeld while Liza Albrecht has been appointed to replace him at Rapport.Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â
Releasing its latest financial results on November 26, Naspers announced significant restructuring and retrenchments.
Lutfia Vayej, the head of corporate communication at Media24, the publishing arm of Naspers, confirmed the reshuffles, saying the print industry has been negatively affected by global economic challenges and technological innovations.
Vayej says these challenges have also affected local print companies with bigger newspapers already feeling the sting of declining advertising and circulation.
She says the companyÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â€žÂ¢s online news portals such as News24.com, Beeld.com, and Die Burger.com were already taking the lead in producing internet news in South Africa.Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â
She says: ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã…â€œIn reaction to the above challenges, Media24 responded by implementing a number of initiatives including the termination of certain projects; curtailing developmental spend; scrapping certain vacancies or deferring the filling thereof where merited, and closing some titles in the magazine and newspaper division.ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã‚Â
ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã…â€œConsultations have been entered into with employees in the affected areas of our business and the outcome has not been finalised.ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã‚Â
She says Media24 also conducted in-depth analysis on the editorial leadership which resulted in the redeployment of Kruger, du Plessis and Albrencht.
She says: ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã…â€œThe time available to prepare ourselves for the internet wave is running out fast. Although it creates exciting new opportunities the time to explore these is limited.Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â With the restructuring our aim is to strengthen our position and enhance our business modelÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã‚Â.