Nation Media Group contributors and columnists have been subjected to 40 per cent pay cuts as the company struggles to generate revenue in the wake of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
The huge pay cuts for the individuals, who contribute to the group’s Daily Nation, Business Daily, The EastAfrican and Taifa Leo newspapers will take effect from May 1, 2020.
In a memo dated Tuesday, April 21, NMG Group Editorial Director Mutuma Mathiu noted that its revenue had dropped significantly following reduced economic activity and restrictions of movement in the wake of COVID-19 pandemic.
“These have severely dented our principal revenue streams, advertising and circulation. Consequently, our current revenue cannot sustain the prevailing level of costs,” said Mathiu.
“In light of the circumstances, the NMG management has taken the difficult decision to reduce the payment for all columnists by 40 per cent with effect from May 1, 2020.”
The Editorial boss further stated that the temporary pay cuts also affect other staffers in NMG.
“These measures are temporary and will be reversed once normalcy returns, ” he added.
NMG joins the list of other media companies that have resulted to pay cuts to stay afloat in the wake of the unprecedented negative effects of COVID-19 on businesses.
Recently Mediamax Network that owns K24 and Kameme TV stations became the first media house in the country to deduct employees’ salaries by half.
The staffers received their consent letters today.
Other media companies including Royal Media, Radio Africa and Standard Media Group, chose to slash the salaries by up to 30 per cent.
The media companies cited a drop in revenue as reason for the changes as companies had stopped or reduced their advertising budget following the negative effects of COVID-19 on the economy.
Many businesses have been forced to close down with customers asked to stay at home as part of efforts to contain the spread of the contagious disease.
This, the companies said, had eaten into their profits, which relies heavily on advertising.