The Nation Media Group (NMG) announced that it will be shutting the door on some of its flagship stations.
The Media group said stations like English radio station Nation FM and its Swahili TV channel QTV in Kenya and KFM radio station in Rwanda are among those to bid the country’s airwaves farewell for good.
In a statement, the company gave these reasons for the decision, saying it wants to key into the rapidly changing media landscape:
“We are cognisant of the changing trends in which individuals are consuming our products. In line with this new reality, we are reorganising ourselves with the objective of transforming the group into a modern Twenty First Century digital content company embracing a digital/mobile first business model,”
On that note, QTV will end its broadcasting as NTV, which is transformed into a “multi-lingual television station.” Nation FM, QFM and KFM will on the other hand only be accessible for streaming online.
Here Is The Full statement:
“We will keep a live signal and maintain and online presence in line with our digital strategy.”
Noting the aftermath of the decision, NMG said they do recognise that today’s announcement will be difficult for the affected employees and their families.
Huge job losses are expected as employees of those stations will have to seek other jobs to make ends meet. Before the statement was released, staff at the radio stations and TV channel which Nation Media Group has said it is closing were barred from entering their offices.
They arrived this morning to their workplace in the capital, Nairobi but were not allowed in. QTV, its Swahili TV channel, has already gone off air and has been replaced with NTV, which broadcasts in English.
The NMG publishes The Nation, and it is one of the Kenya’s largest independent newspaper, as well as in East Africa.
The company was established in 1959 – about six decades ago – by the Aga Khan, a spiritual leader and wealthy businessman who grew up in Kenya.
Last year the Nation and QFM news team was rationalised with those left behind directed to source their news from the television stations.
In recent years the number of newspapers called for closure and severe cutbacks has risen—especially in the United States, where the industry has let go of a fifth of its reporters since 2001.
This is because the news business changes, with more and more people using their smart digital devices to access the news unlike when newspapers and radio stations were major sources. The entire effect weighs on the revenue which has plunged while competition from internet media has shrunk older print publishers.
In a bid to cut the big challenge being faced now, which is simply how to continue to generate income in a world where digital media has made newspaper business obsolete, leading to a deepening recession which has cut profits, many are switching to digital, convergence model which BuzzKenya had already adopted from day one.