Job losses as William Reed buys new titles

Leisure title: Centaur disposal

William Reed is expected to increase its presence in the leisure and hospitality sector this week with the acquisition of three new titles.

The company is in the process of buying the B2B publishing company Martin Information and its titles Hotel Report and M&C Report. It is also on the brink of buying the fortnightly Leisure & Hospitality Business from Centaur Communications.

Around a dozen staff are expected to lose their jobs at Centaur. A further 12 are affected at Martin Information.

Centaur staff were warned about possible job losses two weeks ago and are to find out if they would be offered alternative jobs within the company when the consultation period ends this week. One journalist is believed to have been offered a new job at Centaur and Melanie Swift, editor of Leisure & Hospitality Business, is understood to have been offered a post at William Reed. Other journalists were considering their options.

The move will leave Centaur without a major presence in the leisure and hospitality sector. Leisure & Hospitality Business provides business news for hotels, health and fitness clubs, bars, restaurants and cinemas. William Reed’s portfolio includes The Grocer, Morning Advertiser and the monthly bar culture magazine Class. Sources said there were plans in place for a radical overhaul. The title will relaunch as a monthly newsletter.

Martin Information was established in 1997 by its chief executive Peter Martin. Hotel Report is an online publication and monthly newsletter which covers news and analysis for hotel executives in the UK and Europe. M&C Report is a subscriptions based online publication and a bimonthly newsletter for pubs and restaurants in the UK. The acquisition of Martin Information is also expected to include five annual information guides to restaurants, bars, hotels and nightclubs. It was unclear this week whether staff would transfer to William Reed, which last month boosted its presence in Scotland by launching a Scottish edition of the Morning Advertiser.

William Reed and Peter Martin were unavailable for comment.

By Ruth Addicott

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