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Buzzfeed News to close as media firm cuts jobs

Buzzfeed, the digital media company, announced on Wednesday that it would be cutting its workforce by 15%, amounting to around 200 job losses, as a result of declining revenue. In addition to the job cuts, Buzzfeed has also decided to shut down its national news division in the US, which will result in around forty jobs being lost. The decision to cut staff has come as a result of missed revenue expectations for 2018, which the company predicts will continue in 2019.

Buzzfeed’s Chief Executive Jonah Peretti stated in a letter to staff that recent shifts in the advertising and media landscape have made it difficult to scale a digital advertising business, resulting in the need to pivot the focus of the company. He added that though Buzzfeed continued to grow its revenue in 2018, this growth was not enough to sustain the business over the long-term.

Buzzfeed is one of many digital media companies that is struggling to compete in the current climate. Traditional media companies have also become increasingly dominant in the digital advertising space, and are no longer significantly behind Facebook and Google. For example, The New York Times (NYT) was able to grow its digital advertising revenue by 23% in 2018.

Buzzfeed first announced a restructuring of its business in November 2018, which resulted in 250 job losses. Since then, the company has launched a variety of new projects, such as a new online shopping platform and an initiative called “Buzzfeed News for Black America”, which are set to generate revenue through direct-to-consumer channels.

Buzzfeed’s decision to close its national news operations in the US is a significant one for the company, as Buzzfeed News is widely known for its investigative journalism and breaking news coverage. The company’s international news operations will not be affected by the decision.

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