Gannett, the owner of USA TODAY and local news operations in 45 states, posted a third-quarter loss but said cost-cutting measures are improving its finances, a trend it expects to continue into 2023. The media company reported a net loss of $54.1 million in the three months ending Sept. 30, compared with net income of $14.7 million in the same period a year earlier. The company expects a total net loss of $60 million to $70 million this year, an outlook it had forecast previously.
Gannett “continues to respond decisively to the ongoing macroeconomic volatility and inflationary pressures,” CEO and Chairman Michael Reed said in a release. The latest results come after a “challenging” second quarter, which was followed by Gannett laying off roughly 400 employees, or 3% of its U.S. workforce, to trim costs. Reed said the company continues to work toward $200 million to $240 million in annualized cost savings. Like many industries, Gannett faces a difficult economic environment that includes soaring inflation, labor shortages and price-sensitive consumers.
Last month, Gannett said it would pause its 401(k) match and most hiring, offer employees a voluntary severance plan and have workers take five days of unpaid leave. Reed also plans to reduce his salary through the end of 2023. The company has also been divesting some of its publications. The Albuquerque Journal earlier this week reported that Gannett is selling two of its New Mexico newspapers. Gannett also agreed to sell five Massachusetts publications to CherryRoad Media in September and October.