Sunday, Dec 16, 2018

OCM records slightly lower profits, lays off workers

OCM records slightly lower profits, lays off workers
12 Apr
2018

The Trinidad-based One Caribbean Media (OCM) has announced a slight decline in before tax profit for 2017, blaming the “adverse economic conditions in the markets in which we operate” for the situation.

OCM, which also has media businesses in several other countries including Barbados and Grenada, reported TT$72.4 million (One TT dollar=US$0.16 cents) in profit before taxes for the financial year ending December 31, 2017. It said the figure for previous year was TT$86.5 million.

The group said that its after tax profit for 2017 was TT$52.4 million and chairman Faarees Hosein said that the OCM Group continued to deliver “satisfactory performances despite the adverse economic condition ns in the markets in which we operate”.

He said the Group’s Trinidad-based media businesses “benefitted from restructuring exercises while the new investment in Broadband Cable company “was able to make a solid profit contribution.

“In light of the changing market landscape, we have strategies to achieve even higher levels of efficiency” he added.

Meanwhile, the Barbados-based Nation Publishing Company, which is owned by OCM, has announced plans to lay off workers by the end of May.

In a letter to the Barbados Workers’ Union (BWU) the company blamed the highly competitive and rapidly changing print media environment for the layoffs, also blaming the challenges posed by the various social media platforms for dwindling newspaper revenues over the past 10 years.

It aid as a result, it is forced to make 13 positions redundant. The job cuts would also affect journalists working there.

“The criteria for determining persons for redundancy will be based on the following consideration; knowledge, skills and abilities critical to the viability and future success of the company and the last-in-first-out, where applicable. The terminations are scheduled to take place effective May 31, 2018,” according to the letter signed by the Group Human Resource Manager, Margaret Husbands, and addressed to the BWU’s Dionne Howard said.

But media reports in Barbados said that as many as 30 workers could be affected by the pending job cuts, with non-unionized members of staff, including senior managers, also being placed on the breadline.

Last month, the chief executive officer at the other OCM operation in Barbados, the StarCom radio Network, Anthony Shaw, hinted at job losses in the coming months.