ABS CBN Cebu

We are broadcasting from Central Visayas Broadcast Complex in Cebu North Road, Jagobiao, Mandaue City, Cebu, Philippines. Landline: 032-4221954. Fax: 032-4221952. Email: abscbn.cebu@gmail.com

Friday, August 12, 2005

ABS-CBN Cuts Costs

ABS-CBN to lay off 210 more

Clarissa Batino
Inquirer News Service

TWO HUNDRED and ten more employees of ABS-CBN Broadcasting Corp. are going to lose their jobs between now and October, casualties of the network giant's strategy to cut cost and regain its lead.

"We plan to (terminate) 360 employees or 20 percent of our workforce by September or early October," ABS-CBN president Luis Alejandro said. "This is part of our restructuring to cut cost."

Alejandro said the company had laid off 150 employees so far. It had also reduced by half the number of its management officers, from 12 to six.

The Lopez-owned network said it would save P350 million a year from the salaries of the employees to be fired.

The savings compare with the retirement benefits, expected to cost about P500 million, that the company will have to provide. The benefits will be financed from the proceeds of a new deal struck by its profitable global unit.

ABS-CBN has 1,800 regular employees. Of the 150 who lost their jobs, 35 were editors and reporters under News and Current Affairs. The 35 got the best termination package, according to sources.

The 150 employees received three months' salary for every year of service, which translated, according to sources, millions of pesos to several highly-ranked employees.

"We started with the News and Current Affairs, then sales and marketing, then we are doing the engineering department this week to next week," said Alejandro.

He said even the network's talents were asked to "cooperate" in the effort to cut costs.

Several celebrities, he said, had agreed to reductions in their talent fees and no talent got an increase. "This should translate to savings of about 10 percent of our costs," said Alejandro, who declined to name the stars who took pay cuts.

"We are sticking to our three-point recovery plan. The strategies of focusing on prime time ratings, optimizing production cost and cutting expenses will be continuing," Alejandro said.

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