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NZ Papers Outsource Editorial Production

Newspaper publisher APN News & Media began outsourcing editorial production work Sunday, a strategy being watched by media outlets in other countries, a senior executive said.

An outside contractor now will do the editing and layout work for The New Zealand Herald - the nation's biggest daily - along with several regional papers and weeklies, said APN deputy chief executive Rick Neville.

Starting Sunday, 20 full-time sub-editors at contractor Pagemasters New Zealand will be "operating on an extension of APN's 'Cyber' computer editorial production system" at a site 20 minutes from the paper's editorial offices, Neville said.

By the end of 2007, Pagemasters will have about 45 editing staff at their site to edit the seven newspapers - nearly 30 fewer than the newspapers employed for the job.

Neville said the outsourcing program's benefits include lower personnel costs, more efficiency and "doing a lot more" with costly "knowledge technology."