On Tuesday, Turner execs sent employees the following memo, offering a “voluntary separation program” to tenured employees 55 and older. The note also warned of “additional reductions in staffing” to come.
Some 550 buyouts will be offered at Time Warner’s Turner network this week, including a large number of those at CNN and HLN, which will lead to layoffs if they are not taken voluntarily, an individual with knowledge of the situation told TheWrap.
Last Tuesday, Turner Broadcasting System CEO John Martin revealed in an internal memo that corporate restructuring was coming in the next two months. The same day, on an internal conference call, CNN chief Jeff Zucker told his colleagues, “We are going to do less and have to do it with less.”
On Friday, TheWrap reported that Glenn Beck’s The Blaze was in talks with Time Warner’s CNN to replace struggling sister cable news network HLN. The Blaze offered Time Warner two proposals, but neither went anywhere.
Time Warner has been in talks with the online news network Vice, cofounded by Shane Smith. No deal is in place there either.
Read the new Turner memo about the buyouts:
To support the company’s stated focus on programming, monetization and innovation, we are identifying cost savings and shifting capital allocations to high-growth areas where investment will drive growth and profitability. As part of these efforts, we are offering a Voluntary Separation Program to regular status Turner Broadcasting employees on Turner’s U.S. payroll working in the U.S. and who are at least age 55 and have 10 or more years of service as of December 31, 2014, excluding on-air talent and employees covered by a written employment agreement.
Today, employees meeting these eligibility requirements will receive a confidential, personalized email detailing the program, its benefits and deadlines for acceptance, which is strictly voluntary. This enhanced benefit offering is just one vehicle the company is implementing as part of a comprehensive plan. Given the current focus on reducing costs and prioritizing investments to maximize company performance, Turner will also undertake additional reductions in staffing.
We are grateful to the tenured employees whose service and dedication to Turner Broadcasting have made an indelible mark on our business success.