Centaur axes titles and top staff

Centaur Media is axing the print versions of two of its leading titles – New Media Age and Design Week – as well as slicing up Pitch, in a major shake-up which will see a raft of senior staff leave the company.
The move comes just 24 hours before the opening of Centaur’s flagship trade show, Marketing Week Live, in which both titles are heavily involved. According to some reports, the restructure is expected to affect more than 60 jobs – a tenth of its total workforce. NMA editor-in-chief Michael Nutley, who joined Centaur in 1990, and publisher Andy Oakes, have both already left the company.
Design Week publisher Declan Gough, previously publisher of Precision Marketing, Design Week editor Lynda Relph-Knight, and Creative Review publisher Jessica McDermott – who have all been with Centaur over 20 years – are believed to be among almost 60 staff placed in consultancy.
Those working on Pitch – the subscription-only online news and agency showcase launched with a huge budget to take on the likes of the AAR – have also been put in consultation. Pitch editor Sonoo Singh, previously deputy editor of Marketing Week, has left the company. She tweeted: “Bye everyone, I am no longer at pitch.”
Joe Fernandez, the assistant editor for Pitch, tweeted: “If you haven’t heard already, Pitch is part of these moves at Centaur… Thanks 2 all d well-wishers, hope 4 gd news soon.” The move is also likely to affect former Marketing Week editor Stuart Smith and ex-deputy editor David Benady who both work on the site. One insider described the offices as a “ghost town”.
The last editions of NMA and Design Week will be published this week, although both brands will continue to exist online and the NMA name will also be used on a monthly digital marketing supplement housed under Marketing Week.
The titles up for sale are mostly monthly or fortnightly titles and include The Recruiter, a fortnightly magazine, which Centaur only purchased about four years ago.
The remaining titles will be structured in three divisions, one focused on the legal and financial sectors, another on marketing and creative industries and the third on engineering and corporate services such as HR.
The shake-up coincides with the end of Centaur’s financial year, on June 30, when next year’s budgets are put in place.

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