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Major magazine publisher Bauer Media closing down

The Listener and North & South community papers across the country. File photo Photo: RNZ / Bridget Tunnicliffe

The publisher of some of the country's best known magazines has folded.

Bauer Media, which has The Listener, Woman's Day, New Zealand Woman's Weekly, North and South and Next, says it's no longer viable and it's shut its doors today.

Chief executive Brendon Hill says the COVID-19 lockdown has stopped magazine production and put the business in an untenable position.

He says magazines depend on advertising and it's unlikely that will recover to pre-crisis levels.

Business advisory firm EY has been appointed to work on an orderly wind-down of the business, and buyers are being sought for the magazines.

Brendon says local staff will get full redundancy and other entitlements.

"This is a devastating blow for our committed and talented team who have worked tirelessly to inform and entertain New Zealanders, through some of the country's best-loved and most-read magazines."

Bauer carried out an urgent review of its New Zealand operations and considered all options to keep part or all the business open, including engaging with the New Zealand government, says Brendon.

"An active search is underway to find buyers for our New Zealand assets, including our many iconic titles, however, so far an alternative owner has not been found."

More to come...

-RNZ

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