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7DAYS to go off newsstands in December, 120 jobs at stake

When the December 22 edition of UAE’s free tabloid newspaper 7DAYS hit the newsstands it will be its last.

The newspaper, owned by the UK-based Daily Mail & General Trust Plc (DMGT), has announced that it was ceasing the publication after 13 years, citing bleak prospects of print media.

Launched in 2003 as a weekly, the newspaper increased its frequency two years later to five days a week only to retract a less than a month ago.

The newspaper neck-deep in financial trouble has also announced closing of its online news website on the same day the last copy rolls off the press.

“The current trading environment and future global outlook for print advertising remains severely challenged,” said Mark Rix, CEO of 7DAYS Media.

“Whilst it was our stated intention to re-focus and restructure the business for 2017 and beyond, it has since proved not possible to create an acceptable cost base that could deliver a viable and sustainable business.,”

“It is therefore with great sadness that we announce the unique 7DAYS news brand will close and thus, cease to inform and entertain the UAE in its refreshing and inimitable way,” Rix added.

The closure of the newspaper will also result in the loss of 120 jobs across its editorial, sales and distribution operations, news portal Zawya reported on Wednesday quoting 7DAYS’Assistant Managing Editor Claire Sharrock.

“It is with a very heavy heart that I can confirm this. That is about 120 staff, including our distribution team,” she told the portal.

Print ad spend has drastically declined in the past few years in the UAE and across the worlds.

Globally, adverting spend in newspapers and magazines dropped this year from 2015 by 8 per cent and 5.9 per cent respectively, according to a recent report by London-based consultancy Warc. They are projected to fall further in 2017 by 6.1 per cent and 4.5 per cent.