The advertising, administrative and distribution operations of ailing newspaper giant Trinity Mirror – Britain's largest – are about to undergo decimation.

These activities are said to be in the cross-wires of new chief executive Sly (Sylvia) Bailey who will reveal the results of her prolonged strategic review at the month end.

According to company moles, Bailey – former chief executive and managerial icon at IPC Media (now a unit of AOL Time Warner) – believes large scale job cuts are the way to enhance efficiency and improve newspaper ad sales and marketing. The surgery is also intended to facilitate newspaper distribution contracts.

Says the mole: “We've identified that Trinity is quite difficult to do business with because the company is bureaucratic and needs to be freed up.”

A number of distribution contracts run-out in mid-2004 and Bailey is believed to have discussed a potential deal with Marketforce, the magazine distribution operation formerly owned by her old employer and now an independent entity.

But Trinity will argue that the head-rolling isn’t just about cutting costs. Investors will be told when the company reveals its results July 31: “It is not about savings but a much broader view of what the company becomes in the future.”

Bailey is not contemplating the disposal of any national titles, although regional newspapers in Northern Ireland have been identified as dispensable.

Meantime, as ‘inside sources’ gleefully pedal the rumour mill, TM declined all comment.

Data sourced from: Financial Times; additional content by WARC staff