OB CUTS — AND MORE: Reader’s Digest Association will lay off 8 percent of its workforce, a move that will affect approximately 280 people. In a memo to employees, chief executive officer Mary Berner said remaining employees will be asked to take weeklong, unpaid vacations and merit increases will not be available through the 2010 fiscal year. The company is also suspending its matching contributions to its 401(k) plan. A spokesman said no magazines will close as part of this new “recession plan.” But RDA isn’t the only one cutting.

 After revealing plans to lay off approximately 600 people at Time Inc., and 800 at Warner Bros., Time Warner Inc. has moved on to AOL, which will lay off 700 people between now and March. In a letter to employees, chief executive officer Randy Falco said the company will forgo merit pay increases in 2009 to minimize the number of layoffs. “To provide some perspective on these decisions, right now we’re two years into a three-year turnaround plan. Since Day One, our strategy has focused on building and growing mutually dependent publishing, advertising and social media businesses to take advantage of the shifting media landscape,” he said.

This story first appeared in the January 29, 2009 issue of WWD.  Subscribe Today.

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