The Week Australia’s ‘period of consultation‘ was not as long as it could (or should) have been as the company went into voluntary liquidation on 17 October.
The title has simply stopped publishing.
There is no news as to whether staff will get proper redundancy or a statutory minimum, whether customers will get any refunds on what remains of their subscriptions or what creditors will receive. The cynical might think that this was a shoddy move to reduce the amount that the company needs to pay out to wind up its failed Australian business.
At the beginning of the month Dennis Publishing announced that its profits had risen 14% to £4.1m
Felix Dennis’s personal wealth is estimated at £500m
It seems like it might not be such a g’day for the employees of The Week in Australia, with a report in The Australian newspaper that ‘a period of consultation’ is taking place with staff.
Rumours about the difficulties facing the title have been around for a while, with both advertising sales and subscriptions stubbornly refusing to deliver what’s needed to be profitable. Parachuting in Mike Frey 18 months ago to try to sort things out doesn’t seem to have fixed the broader strategic problems that have been present since day one.
If closure does happen it will be the first setback in the seemingly unstoppable rise of The Week brand, and hugely embarrassing for the Dennis senior management who launched the Australian edition just four years ago. Whether any heads will roll is unlikely (apart, of course, from the poor saps working in Sydney).