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Reach suspends guidance, dividend amid pandemic

By Michele Maatouk

Date: Monday 06 Apr 2020

(Sharecast News) - Reach suspended its final dividend and 2020 guidance on Monday as it said some employees will take a pay cut due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The publisher of the Daily Mirror pointed to continued uncertainty around the severity and length of the crisis and the resulting impact in terms of advertising, print circulation and events.

"As a result Reach has suspended guidance for the financial year 2020 and beyond. However, we have taken a number of cash conservation measures including removal of discretionary spend, appropriate renegotiations with suppliers, cancellations of orders and negotiated payment delays," it said.

The company said it will no longer propose a final dividend for the financial year ending 2019 ""given the uncertainty around the current crisis and the fact that the company is accessing the Government's Job Protection scheme".

Reach said all members of the board and some members of its most senior editorial and management team will take a 20% pay cut effective immediately, while all bonus schemes for 2020 have been suspended. In addition, the company will be communicating with Reach employees regarding a 10% pay reduction and for 20% of colleagues to be furloughed.

"The board believes these measures represent the most appropriate and responsible course of action in the light of the ongoing uncertainty around the length and impact of the current unprecedented crisis.

"All of our key national and regional publications will continue to operate at this vital time despite these measures and we have sought to spread the burden of these actions across all stakeholder groups. We continue to monitor the impact of this crisis on the group, recognising that the situation is fast evolving."

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