VNU has admitted there will be some redundancies following its
acquisition of Ziff-Davis’s European magazines, but denied it had
immediate plans to close any of the titles.
Most sales staff on Ziff’s UK magazines - IT Week, PC Direct, PC
Magazine and PC Gaming World - look certain to be kept on by VNU,
although many support staff at Ziff face the axe.
Brin Bucknor, VNU’s managing director, explained: ’The acquisition of
Ziff is different to our acquisition of CMP last year. There was a great
deal of overlap with CMP, but Ziff’s titles are complementary. But an
acquisition like this will inevitably result in some losses in areas
such as administration.’
He added: ’In terms of the editorial and ad teams on each of the
magazines, there will be minimal impact.’
Sources close to VNU said there might be some overlap between the Dutch
publisher’s Network News and Ziff’s IT Week, and between VNU’s Personal
Computer World and Ziff’s PC Direct.
But Bucknor was adamant there were no plans to merge any of these
’Ziff had plans for its titles and we had plans for ours,’ he said.
’Some may be slowed down, some may be sped up, but we would be fools to
fold any of the titles immediately. They are all strong players in their
Bucknor admitted Ziff’s PC Gaming World did not fit into VNU’s existing
’publishing strategy’. But he said speculation it would be sold to
gaming specialists such as Future or Paragon was premature.
’There are lots of options - we are reviewing its future,’ he said.
Ziff’s staff, currently based near Tower Bridge on St Katherine’s Way,
will trade their view of the Thames for VNU’s recently refurbished
offices in the middle of Soho.
One Ziff insider said: ’This is not a bad swap.’ Several others,
however, are apparently less keen to join their old rival and have
contacted recruitment consultancies.
As part of the acquisition, VNU also acquired PC Professionell, PC
Direkt and Internet Professionell in Germany, and PC Expert, PC Direct
and Yahoo! Internet Life in France.