A New Year message…
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2011 was ‘a particularly good year’ for GNNL
It seems as if it were only yesterday we welcomed 2011.  But no, it has been one year since, as we now prepare to usher in 2012, a leap year.  With the Christmas celebrations over and as we welcome the New Year, it is apposite to pause and reflect on our journey
in 2011 and to determine whither we go in 2012.
We have had a particularly good year.  Our profits have increased over 2010, and with the usual hard work by our Board, Management and Staff, we expect to continue this trend in 2012. In spite of competition and calls for boycott, our circulation has held steady.  Our advertising revenue has increased in the face of competition from the three other newspapers and television stations, which all share the same limited ‘pie’.  The increased advertising revenue must be attributed in part to the improved print quality of our newspapers, as a result of the acquisition of a new press in the previous year.

Our success during the year also reflected the way in which we operated. Notwithstanding the fact that we are a semi-autonomous government agency, we are not in receipt of a subvention from the Government, despite the widely held view to the contrary, in some quarters. 
We paid a salary increase to our employees during the year and we have made significant improvements in other areas to enhance staff welfare.  We have improved our internal infrastructure in such a way that our employees are now working in more comfort and zeal.  Our customers and visitors are also able to conduct their business in a relaxed and friendly atmosphere.  We will continue to work towards improving the physical infrastructure for the benefit of our employees and customers.  The significant improvements in the physical infrastructure and staff welfare have meant that we have had to revise and change our business strategy during the year.  We will continue to operate as a business to ensure our continued viability, without losing sight of our mandate to provide a service to the Guyanese nation.  
We have attained most of the goals we set ourselves at the beginning of the year. Our website is up and running and we have maintained our leadership role in this respect, particularly in the diaspora where it is the most widely read and frequently visited among the local sites.
The Mastermind Quiz Game which was launched early in the year has proved to be very popular with students. This Quiz game targets children up to 12 years who are studying for and writing the Grade 6 examination. The feedback has been very encouraging, and we expect the number of students playing the game to substantially increase in the New Year, especially in light of Government’s policy of One Laptop Per Family, when most students would have access to a computer.
During the year, our staff turnover has been reasonably high when compared with previous years.  However, this phenomenon is not unique to our company and in spite of this we have achieved consistently high levels of performance.  We have also been covering the news quite extensively.   As the elections approached, we signed on to the Media Code of Conduct and in spite of our staffing constraints, we were able to give fair and extensive coverage to all the political parties.  We will continue to give fair and balanced coverage in the new year.
We have no illusions for 2012. We anticipate many challenges and hurdles which would require our continued hard work, commitment and dedication to overcome, if we are to sustain the successes we achieved in 2011. In this respect, we look forward to the continued support of all our customers and friends, the major shareholder, and last but not least, our Board of Directors, Management and Staff.
In concluding, may I take this opportunity on behalf of our Board, Management and Staff to wish all our advertisers, our numerous customers and friends and their families and the major shareholder, a very Happy and Prosperous New Year.

K. Burrowes
Guyana National Newspapers Limited (GNNL)

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