The Messenger predicts layoffs in search of money

The Messenger, a digital news startup launched last year with big ambitions, will cut about two dozen employees this week as it faces dwindling cash reserves, according to a person at current decision.

The employees are expected to be laid off this week as part of a cost-cutting measure, said the person, who will speak only anonymously because staff have not yet been informed. The company is facing financial challenges in a tough digital advertising market that have strained its operations, the source said.

In a statement, The Messenger said it was “in the midst of a second-round raise,” but the company declined to provide details on how much money it was seeking. The press release did not mention the layoffs.

The Messenger has around 300 employees and publishes articles on politics, culture and general news.

Richard Beckman, former executive of the Condé Nast magazine company and president of The Messenger, announced Tuesday that he was leaving the company, citing “short-term health issues.” Mr. Beckman was an early key employee of Jimmy Finkelstein, a longtime media executive who founded The Messenger.

When Mr. Finkelstein launched The Messenger last year, he said he planned to make a splash in the digital media industry. He told the New York Times that he hoped the company would attract 100 million unique monthly viewers by the end of 2024 and generate more than $100 million in annual revenue – goals that would put it in the same class than some main national competitors.