Ziggo to drop 450 staffers in UPC merger
The Netherlands' largest cable operator, Ziggo, is dropping 450 employees in its merger with Dutch cable company UPC, NOS reports. Several hundred temporary workers, freelancers, independent contractors and third-party hires will also be let go. Ziggo currently employs approximately 5,000 people, but the merger has made 450 fixed jobs as well as hundreds of temporary and third-party contracts redundant, according to NOS. The cuts were made known last year when UPC's parent company, Liberty Global, took Ziggo over. Ziggo and UPC will continue to operate under the name Ziggo, together holding 90 percent of the cable network in the Netherlands and sharing 4.3 million Dutch households as customers. The merger enables the companies to work more efficiently in many areas, according to a Ziggo spokesperson. "This is particularly the case with departments that focus on new product development, innovation and infrastructure and the management layers," the spokesman is quoted as stating by NOS. The job losses contrast with lucrative consequences that the merger has for Ziggo's directors. The head of the executive board, Andrew Sukawaty, holds over half a million Ziggo shares, worth approximately 17.7 million euros. In the merger, he gets a 5.7 million-euro cash payment and receives the remainder in Liberty Global shares.