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Swedish TV group revamps

TV4 shifts staff in cost-cutting move

AMSTERDAM — Sweden’s TV4, the largest commercial TV net in the Nordic territories, has moved once again to cut costs with the merger of its news, sports and current affairs departments into one new entity to be headed up by current administrative director Magnus Janson.

The net, which includes a spinoff national channel TV4 Plus and some 16 local news stations, is also reorganizing at the local level. Some 550 of the 900 people at TV4 will be affected by the changes but expected redundancies will be minimized, said a TV4 spokesman.

The reorg will save the net 50 million Swedish kroner ($7 million), which will be used to pump up the programming at the main channel.

At the local level, the 16 news outlets are now grouped together in five companies. Four of those companies and some 15 stations will be now housed under one company called TV4 Sverige (Sweden). The fifth company will be dissolved but the 16th station will continue broadcasting in compliance with TV4’s license contract with the government.

TV4 posted a net profit of $3.3 million in its first nine months on flat revenues, up from $2.2 million a year earlier, with most of the profit being put down to cost cutting across the board. The revs of the net, whose largest shareholder is Nordic media giant Bonnier, have been relatively flat throughout the year.

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