The publisher of Sports Illustrated is laying off much of the famed magazine's entire staff.
The news, first reported by Front Office Sports, comes less than 24 hours after publisher The Arena Group announced “significant workforce reductions” of 100 employees. . Arena said it continues to manage “significant” debt and recent missed payments, and the job cuts are part of “cost-cutting measures to begin the transformation to a streamlined business model.”
The Athletic's Richard Deitsch separately tweeted an image of an email sent to employees saying “staff” working for the Sports Illustrated brand were being let go.
The union representing SI's staff said in a statement on Twitter that Arena had been notified of its intention to lay off “a significant number, perhaps all,” of union-represented staff.
“Today is another difficult day in the midst of four difficult years for Sports Illustrated under the management of Arena Group (formerly The Maven),” the union said in a statement. “We are calling on ABG to ensure the continued publication of SI, allowing us to serve our audiences as we have for almost 70 years,” the statement read. and uses an acronym referring to Authentic Brands Group, which held the license. Operated by Sports Illustrated.
NBC News has reached out to Arena for comment.
Sports Illustrated made headlines last fall after reports surfaced that appeared to feature AI-generated articles, photos, and authors.
In response to these reports, Arena fired CEO Ross Levinson and replaced him with Manoj Bhargava, founder and CEO of Innovation Ventures, known for developing the 5-hour energy drink. Bhargava himself subsequently resigned in January to avoid an unspecified potential conflict of interest.
Arena Group also owns TheStreet, Parade, Men's Journal and HubPages.
This is a developing story. Please check the latest information.