NPR will be forced to cut at least $10 million to its budget and hold back hiring over a decline in sponsorship revenue, their chief executive announced in a memo Wednesday.
The network’s chief executive, John Lansing, told staff that the company will come to a near “total hiring freeze” to avoid layoffs and to compensate for the $20 million decline in sponsorship revenue, NPR reported. The outlet will also be forced to curtail non-essential travel and discretionary spending.
The $10 million budget cut represents approximately 3% of the network’s budget, the outlet reported.
“As we did during the pandemic, we are prioritizing our staff and not anticipating layoffs at this time,” Lansing wrote. “It means we won’t have the skills and support of the people who would have been in the roles that must remain vacant. For those working long and stressful hours, that is not good news. But it is a reality we can’t avoid if we are to save jobs.”
Near freeze on hiring ahead at NPR as budget cuts loom, but chief executive says no layoffs in sight.
$10M cuts reflect about 3 percent of NPR budget.
— David Folkenflik (@davidfolkenflik) November 30, 2022
Among the hiring halt, Lansing has suspended the search for a chief content officer, whose job is to overlook the news and programming leaders, the outlet reported. (REPORT: CNN Loses Substantial Sum Of Money As Ratings Plummet)
The loss in revenue was partially offset due to new business agreements intended to license NPR content on external platforms, the outlet reported.
Other major news networks have experienced massive revenue declines in a shaky economy. CNN President Chris Licht informed his staff that a pool of employees, including full-time employees and paid contributors, will be laid off over the outlet’s historically low profits and ratings. The network’s profit is set to drop below $1 billion for the first time since 2016, while its ratings are at its lowest since tracking began in 1992.