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TV4 axes news unit, closing channels in cost-cutting drive

Swedish broadcaster TV4 Group has announced wide-ranging cost-cutting measures that will see it fold its independent news subsidiary TV4Nyheterna, bringing all journalistic activity back into its core business. The company is also setting up a new joint unit for studios and production technology across news and sports as part of a wider rationalisation of its activities.

TV4 said it planned to save about SEK400 million (€42 million) annually through the changes, which follow the earlier integration of the group’s free and pay TV activities.

Two TV channels, comedy channel TV4 Komedi, which launched in 2006, and documentary channel TV4 Fakta XL, which launched in 2012, are being shut down in the autumn.

In all, about 90 staff are expected to lose their jobs, according to local reports.

Casten Almqvist

Casten Almqvist

TV4 is shutting down local news operations in Jönköping, Norrköping, Falun and Sundsvall. The number of national reporters employed by the outfit will fall from 24 to18.

The latest round of cost-cutting measures come after TV4 parent Bonnier Broadcasting reported sharp falls in revenue and earnings last year.

TV4 and Bonnier Broadcasting CEO Casten Almqvist said that the majority of the 90 services operated by the group would now be housed within TV4, pay TV unit C More and Bonnier Broadcasting.

He said that the group had found it “absolutely necessary” to streamline its organsition to address changes in TV viewership and media consumption.