A digital advertising downturn afflicting the online news sector has claimed its latest casualty, with the news that digital women’s magazine The Pool has entered administration after talks to save the company fell short.
Staff were informed that the publisher is now insolvent, leaving 24 journalists to face an uncertain future at the hands of administrators. It is understood that employees and freelancers went unpaid in January, they face an uphill battle to recoup lost salaries.
I don't really know what to say. I'm absolutely gutted. This has been an extremely frustrating situation, and I'm heartbroken and fucked off. For my team. For our freelancers. For our readers. I always wanted to work at The Pool, and I can't quite believe what's happened.— Cate Sevilla (@CateSevilla) January 31, 2019
Founded by broadcaster Lauren Laverne and ex Cosmopolitan editor Sam Baker in 2015 The Pool had raised in excess of £4m from shareholders but had struggled to break even, racking up unsustainable losses of £1.8m in the last financial year.
Confidence in The Pool was further undermined by the departure of both founders last year, although Baker remained active at the website until the final weeks.
Passing on the grim news to staff Dominic Hill, The Pool’s sole remaining director, said: “As a director and shareholder, I have a duty to do this as the business is now insolvent and we have exhausted all rescue ideas/plans.
“Like you, I loved The Pool and what it stood for, and I’m sorry that I let you and it down. Thank you so much for working and loving The Pool right to the last minute. It says a lot about a company/brand/business that even when the team know the business is out of the time, they continue giving it their all!.”