Sports weekly shuts down

Nyemudzai Kakore Herald Reporter
Gemazo Blitz, a weekly sports and lifestyle newspaper, has shut down after failing to survive in the competitive media industry.

The paper had been running on a shoestring budget since inception.

Gemazo Blitz had been publishing for the last three years, first as a monthly magazine and then as a weekly.

The newspaper published its last issue last Friday and notified readers of the closure.

The paper’s closure comes in the wake of the closure of The Zimbabwe Mail two weeks ago and the announcement by Alpha Media Holdings, publishers of NewsDay, the Zimbabwe Independent and The Standard, that they will stop printing Southern Eye on April 1 due to viability challenges.

Gemazo Blitz editor Fanuel Viriri published the notice to close in the Friday issue in bold typeface on the second page.

He said the decision to take a hiatus was in response to challenging market conditions as advertising revenues had declined.

“Hexagon Sports management, the publishers of Gemazo Blitz, have announced that it will suspend publication of Gemazo Blitz today hoping to make a comeback in the not-so distant future should the harsh economic environment prevailing in the country improve for the better,” said Viriri in the statement.

“Today’s issue of Gemazo Blitz will be the last one for our newspaper. We all knew this day was coming and it is a sad day. Like all media brands, Gemazo Blitz has been tremendously impacted by the decline of advertising revenue despite a strong and loyal following.”

Mr Viriri called for readers to pay subscription fees and for advertising agencies to come forward for the tabloid to continue publishing online.

Staff salaries had been cut by 50 percent in the run-up to the closure.

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