According to Caxton, the recent decision was made due to the current tough economic climate, coupled with the company's solution-driven response to these changes.

By evolving the footprints of some of its local newspapers, the company aims to ensure that it continues to produce top-quality, hyperlocal news for readers, as well as delivering the right market at the right time and place to its advertisers.

Jaco Koekemoer, managing director of Caxton Local Media and commercial printing, says, "Our industry, like so many others globally, has been hard hit by COVID-19 and its associated regulations; and added to this, the company has incurred massive losses in advertising revenue since the beginning of the lockdown."

According to Caxton, it became very apparent to Caxton Local Media through recent, extensive and independent research that shopping patterns, buying behaviours and demographics of people living in some areas and communities have changed drastically in a very short time.

Caxtons says that footprints of certain local newspapers in Gauteng metropolitan areas, Limpopo, Mpumalanga and the South Coast of KwaZulu-Natal needed to be adapted for the company to provide the best solutions for readers, customers and clients in these markets.

One example is in the North Eastern suburbs of Johannesburg, where the North Eastern Tribune will no longer be published as an independent title.

From Tuesday, 19 May the footprint of the Tribune's sister publication, the Rosebank Killarney Gazette, will be expanded to cover hyperlocal news in some North East Joburg suburbs and, therefore, the Gazette will also have an increased print order to accommodate these changes.

Just before the nationwide lockdown was implemented, Caxton Local Media bid farewell to its city-based publication, City Buzz, in Johannesburg's CBD. This experimental publication to reach the student market in Braamfontein, Newtown, Maboneng and surrounds had not proven to be viable at the time.

"By streamlining our resources, we commit to deliver effective solutions for our customers by providing a better reach for local advertisers and national retailers," concludes Koekemoer.

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