Ballantyne and Flint to leave NatMags amid restructure

LONDON - Hearst Digital managing director Alex Ballantyne is to leave the NatMags-owned group as part of a restructure that will mean the digital business is folded into the wider NatMags' operation.

Around half the staff at NatMags' digital operation, which numbers between 60 and 70, including about 20 commercial positions, will be made redundant, according to sources. In addition, NatMags will form a centralised commercial team that will sell across its digital and magazine offerings.

There will, however, remain a small dedicated team for each title.

Ballantyne and Stuart Flint, who headed the group's agency-facing sales team, are the two most high-profile departures. The changes follow the announcement in February by NatMags -which publishes titles including Cosmopolitan and Esquire - that it is cutting nearly 100 jobs across the group.

The group said at the time the job cuts would run across the entire UK business, including editorial and commercial. The digital redundancies form part of these cutbacks.

NatMags previously structured its digital commercial operations around individual brands such as Esquire.co.uk and Cosmopolitan.co.uk, which operated with their individual commercial and editorial teams.

Last year, the group moved to an agency-focused model and established four dedicated agency sales teams tailored to service the big agencies, such as WPP and Omnicom.

The new centralised sales team will sell across magazines and their accompanying websites, and the group's stand-alone websites - Getlippy.com, Netdoctor.co.uk and Allaboutyou.com
In February, NatMags announced that it was axing 100 jobs.

NatMags confirmed the departures of Ballantyne and Flint, but declined to comment further.

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