The Wall Street Journal: Sports Illustrated’s new operator to slash jobs

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TheMaven Inc., which earlier this year licensed the rights to Sports Illustrated’s print and digital publications, is planning to eliminate more than 40 positions at the sports media bible as part of a broader overhaul, according to people familiar with the matter.

The employees are expected to receive notice this week that their jobs are being cut, according to the people. Some of the notifications will be delivered as soon as Thursday, they said. The total number of employees at Sports Illustrated couldn’t be learned. TheMaven is planning to hire as many as 200 contract workers in coming months to cover sports, one of the people said.

Seattle-based TheMaven Inc. MVEN, -10.11%   cut a deal to license Sports Illustrated’s publications in June, after previous owner Meredith MDP, -5.60%   sold the magazine to licensing company Authentic Brands Group for about $110 million. Authentic Brands Group licensed the rights to publish the magazine in print and online for at least the next 10 years in exchange for royalties and a $45 million upfront payment.

TheMaven has already begun making changes at Sports Illustrated. Christian Stone, the magazine’s editor in chief, is leaving the publication after seven years at the helm, Sports Illustrated Chief Executive Ross Levinsohn said in a memo earlier this week. TheMaven announced the appointment of two editors-in-chief, Steve Cannella and Ryan Hunt, in his place.

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