Employee must take four days off without pay by the end of March and and three more in each of the next two quarters.”Despite aggressive sales initiatives and significant cost reductions already implemented, we need to build in additional expense savings to offset the revenue shortfalls we anticipate,” says CEO Marshall Morton.
Media General is implementing an employee furlough program to cut costs in the face of contracting economy and diminishing advertising revenue.
The savings will be used for debt reduction, the company said.
Employees of the newspaper publishing and broadcasting company will take a mandatory 10 days off — four days by the end of March and three days each in the next two quarters.
Unionized and other employees under contract are being asked to participate in lieu of layoffs.
“The current economic outlook requires us to be even more cautious than we already have been regarding our revenue expectations,” said Marshall N. Morton, president and chief executive officer.
“Despite aggressive sales initiatives and significant cost reductions already implemented, we need to build in additional expense savings to offset the revenue shortfalls we anticipate.
“With this furlough, along with other cost reduction measures already implemented, we are being prudent and proactive as we address the impact of unprecedented economic turmoil in our country and our industry,” said Morton.
In January, Media General announced that it is suspending the company’s matching contribution on its 401(k) plan effective April 1 through the end of the year, and the board of directors suspended the dividend on its common stock.
These actions, together with the furlough, will provide an additional $28 million this year for debt reduction.