Tuesday, May 10, 2011

WaPo 1Q Revenues Sag Like Staff Morale as Publisher's Earnings Soar

WASHINGTON - JANUARY 15:   Employees wait outs...Image by Getty Images via @daylifeDragged down by a combination of declining enrollment in its Kaplan Higher Education unit and dwindling advertising revenues, The Washington Post Co. reported a 7 percent decline in First Quarter 2011 revenues compared to a year ago while corporate profits were two-thirds lower than during the corresponding period in 2010.

First quarter profits were $15.2 million or $1.87 a share compared to $45.4 million or $4.91 a share last year, the Post reported, while print advertising fell 8 percent and daily circulation shrunk just under 3 percent.  The Post endured a $30.7 million write-down on its poor-performing investment in the Corinthian Colleges post-secondary education firm and witnessed a 23 percent dropoff in the number of students enrolled in Kaplan's online and on-campus communities.

In the face of such grim news, Post staffers were none too pleased to learn that Publisher Katherine Weymouth received a 16.4 percent pay raise, boosting her base salary to $625,000. The Newspaper Guild's contract with the Post expires in June 2011, and already, staffers, who have seen the newsroom rocked by layoffs, are making noises about a pay increase to match the publisher's.

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