Friday, 17 April 2009

Bailey calls for merger reform but not state help

Trinity Mirror chief executive Sly Bailey has today repeated her call for a relaxation of merger rules for regional publishers and said they don't want state subsidies, HoldtheFrontPage reports.
Bailey told today's Digital Britain Summit at the British Library in London that she believed there were grounds for further regional newspaper consolidation.
"Let me be clear, we're not asking for state support. All we're asking for is a 21st century merger regime to suit a 21st century media. We believe there are grounds for further regional newspaper consolidation. The old narrow definitions of print markets and concern about our dominant positions simply don't apply.
"We have a myriad of new, able, well-funded digital competitors and if we're going to compete effectively with them, then we need more scale. Allowing regional newspaper publishers to merge and consolidate is the only way we will be able to face these threats head on and to limit the damage of the recession to our industry.
"If the pressures of this recession put local newspapers out of business then think very hard about what we'll be left with.....the death of journalism as we know it."

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