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Paramount layoff: Studio giant cuts 5 percent of workforce

A memo released on the lot let 110 employees go.
By CAROLINE LEE, UPI.com   |   Oct. 2, 2013 at 9:52 AM   |   Comments

Oct. 2 (UPI) -- Paramount has laid off 110 of its staff members through a memo released Wednesday morning.

Those laid off have not yet been informed, but the layoff was not a surprise. In a recent speech, Viacom CEO Phillipe Dauman said that the studio would be trimming its ranks by lowering the cost of movie and TV production.

The layoff comprises 5 percent of its workforce, including employees from the departments of finance, human resources, information technology, international home video distribution, legal and marketing.

In a memo sent to all employees Tuesday morning, the studio cited "an increasingly competitive environment" as the reason behind the cut. The last major layoff at Paramount was in December 2008, when the studio cut 7 percent of its workforce across all divisions.

"Change is always difficult and we never take these steps lightly," the memo reads. "We are confident that these changes will allow us to manage our business with greater speed and flexibility and fully capitalize on opportunities in the global entertainment market."

Read the full memo from COO Frederick Huntsberry below.

As our industry continues to adapt to an increasingly competitive environment, we are always ensuring that Paramount is conducting its business as efficiently and productively as possible. As such we are making important and necessary changes in how we operate across several business functions.

Although most employees will not be impacted, these changes will result in organizational realignment in select areas, and the elimination of 110 positions on the lot and in a number of international locations. The headcount reductions will primarily impact Finance, Human Resources, Information Technology, International Home Media Distribution, Legal and Marketing.

Change is always difficult and we never take these steps lightly. We are confident that these changes will allow us to manage our business with greater speed and flexibility and fully capitalize on opportunities in the global entertainment market. We know you all join us in wishing our departing colleagues well.

We have an extraordinary team at Paramount, a strong slate of upcoming films and exciting plans for re-entry into television production.

Our legacy of success stretches back more than 100 years, with a deep history of adjusting to our industry’s challenges and realizing its new opportunities – all while creating the world’s most iconic films and entertainment experiences.

Thank you for your continued hard work.

© 2013 United Press International, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI's prior written consent.
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