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December 5, 2017updated 06 Dec 2017 9:26am

Editor and other Saga Magazine journalists axed in pre-Christmas mass redundancies at over-50s group

By Dominic Ponsford

Insurance and holidays group Saga has made 100 staff redundant, including the editor of its monthly magazine.

Press Gazette understands that Saga Magazine editor Katy Bravery and art director Paul Hayes-Watkins are among a number of journalists on the small editorial staff of Saga magazine who are being made redundant.

The company declined to provide any further details on editorial cutbacks or comment about the future of the title.

The editorial cutbacks raise the prospect that Saga may be looking to take production of its magazine out of house to a customer publishing company.

Bravery has been editor since January 2008 when she took over from Emma Soames.

Circulation of Saga magazine has flagged in recent years from 632,217 in 2012 (when the cover price was £2.50) to 288,947 (at the current price of £4 per issue) All the staff are based at Saga’s HQ in Folkestone.

Kent Online reports that security staff stood over staff as they cleared their desks before being “marched out of the building”.

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Saga plc specialises in selling holidays and insurance to the over 50s.

The company reported revenue in 2017 of £871.3m (down from £916.2m in 2016). But profit before tax was up last year at £193.3m (compared with £176.2m in 2016).

Travel, including a substantial cruise holidays business, is the biggest part of the business accounting for £432m of revenue.

A spokesman for Saga said: “We can confirm that the difficult decision has been taken this week to make around 100 employees redundant across the business.

“This process is being managed sensitively with all of Saga’s impacted employees. We are consulting with all those affected and until this process is complete we are unable to confirm the changes that will be made.

“Like many companies, we review our structure on a regular basis and in taking this action our objective is to make the business more efficient, customer focused and sustainable in the long term.

“We have made good progress this year against our strategic priorities, including the launch of a membership programme to reward our customers and the agreement to build a second new ship.

“The changes we have made this week will allow us to invest further in future growth.”

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