Disturbing but not surprising that’s my reaction to what is happening to CanWest Media. I truly feel for what the employees (some of whom are my friends and former colleagues) must be going through.
The lastest Reuters headline did not mince any words.
The artcile points out that the acquistion of Hollinger and Alliance Atlantis while ambitous were also fraught with peril. The economy only compounds the situation making their existing assets less valuable. In July of 2000 when CanWest bought Holinger, the share price was $18.55/share. When CanWest purchased Alliance-Atlantis the share price was trading around $10.63/share. And now it is at 25 cents/share. Certainly, the slumping economy compounded their woes.
While focusing on the big ticket mainstream media items (newspapers, specialty networks ) CanWest didn’t move quickly in the one area where it needed to – Online. Canwest was slow to react to the online world. Was it a portal? Was it email? Network vs Local priorites? The end result a potentially great brand Canada.com languished in usability hell for years.
Think of it CANADA.COM. How many private companies own a country dot com domain?
Only recently did CanWest finish a much needed revamp of their newspapers online – and they did a good job too.
I hope the many talented people who work for CanWest will somehow see their way through this.