Insider – RTL retains Gruner+ Jahr core brands and discontinues magazines

– by Klaus Lauer

Berlin (Reuters) – According to insiders, after the merger of the TV broadcaster RTL with Gruner + Jahr, the core brands of the traditional Hamburg publisher are to be retained.

Magazines such as the flagships “Stern”, “Geo”, “Brigitte” and “Capital” should be continued, the Reuters news agency learned from several people familiar with the matter on Monday. However, many titles are to be discontinued and some sold. This applies to smaller offshoots such as “Brigitte” or “Geo”, some of which are unprofitable. It should come to a job cuts in the three-digit range, it said. RTL did not want to comment on this and pointed out that RTL boss Thomas Rabe wanted to inform the workforce about his plans on Tuesday morning in the publishing house on Hamburg Baumwall.

Rabe wants to outline the future of the media group in several information rounds with managers, the works council and the entire workforce in Hamburg and Cologne. Observers expect that there should also be an austerity course with job cuts for RTL. Rabe will also meet with Hamburg’s Prime Minister Peter Tschentscher and Media Senator Carsten Brosda.

The parent company Bertelsmann and its TV subsidiary RTL Group announced in 2021 that RTL Germany and Gruner + Jahr are to be merged in 2022. Many Gruner+ Jahr executives have since left the company. Top managers from Gütersloh and Cologne recently took a close look at all the publishing titles and checked what should be kept and what should possibly be sold.

Rabe, who is currently the head of Bertelsmann, RTL Group and RTL Germany, has emphasized that for the planned investments in the important streaming business, resources must be redistributed and structures must be questioned. “The magazine business, for example, is currently under particular pressure,” Rabe said in an internal interview in the fall. “That’s why we will review the title portfolio and only merge titles with RTL that are really synergistic.”

(Edited by Ralf Bode. If you have any questions, please contact our editorial team at [email protected])