As Johnston Press announced a statutory loss of £143.8m last week for the full financial year – chief executive Ashley Highfield unveiled an eight-year plan to pay back the company’s £351.7m debt mountain and return to growth.
Last year Johnston’s operating profit fell 10.3 per cent to £64.6m on turnover down 6.1 per cent to £373.8m – a profit margin of 17 per cent. Highfield believes he can double that profit margin by pursuing a digital-first strategy, changing dailies to weeklies, launching a range of mobile apps and replacing a number of staff journalists with ‘citizen journalists’ and freelances.
Click on the links below to read Press Gazette’s coverage of the dramatic changes which have taken place at the UK’s second biggest regional newspaper publisher since Highfield took charge late last year. Pictures include slides from Highfield’s 2020 vision for the company.