Media Appraiser Kevin Kamen: Newsday Could Shut Down Saturday Edition

(Baldwin, N.Y.) Newspaper appraiser Kevin Kamen, president of Kamen & Co Group Services in Baldwin, is suggesting that readers should not become surprised if later this year Cablevision management decides to cut out a Saturday edition of Newsday to save costs and subsequently publishes a combo weekend Friday edition that contains necessary editorial content and a marketing program that also affords advertisers an opportunity to get a better buy if they advertise in the Sunday edition.

Kamen stated, “These are different times in the newspaper industry, almost everyone is taking a bath with both classified and ROP display ad lineage dramatically down and I would not be surprised to any degree if Cablevision, who is losing millions of dollars with its recent Newsday acquisition, takes serious measures to substantially cut costs in coming months and eliminates a Saturday edition. By cutting out a Saturday edition Cablevision could quickly realize a savings across the board, be able to further eliminate editorial and production positions and essentially streamline costs that help their profit margins. With major advertisers such as Fortunoff’s and local auto dealers closing down on Long Island and or in bankruptcy, along with national corporate ad buyers slicing their marketing campaigns drastically, Newsday and all other daily newspapers are significantly feeling the impact and investors and ownership teams are seeing their media portfolios shrink in total valuation.

With the home realty market no longer a factor in classified sales, the one historic area of almost guaranteed revenue for a daily newspaper in past years has now been eliminated and its consequence should not be underestimated. This has only compounded the losses on all financial documents at publishing companies. This is not just a case of Cablevision examining and cutting debt but rather the valuation of their entire organization and business model that is taking a hit and impacting other aspects within their company.

Big change is clearly going to have to come and thinking out of the box is what is required right now – for all publishing entities. Eliminating a Saturday edition is a big change indeed and what I believe would be required at this time.” Kamen concluded his remarks stating,” As media appraisers we have the unfortunate responsibility to place a diminishing value on publishing companies from all across the country every day of late and trust me when I tell you that if publishing ownership teams do not take drastic steps to curtail expenditures now and think about operating their business entities differently, regardless of the digital components and broadcast capabilities associated with most media conglomerates, the unthinkable could happen.”