Over six months after the official closing of WME and Silver Lake Partner’s $2.2 billion deal to acquire IMG, the former is shedding some employees of the latter. Bosses Ari Emanuel and Patrick Whitesell announced today that about 100 of IMG’s global staff would be exiting the company. “We will be downsizing three percent of our workforce across IMG in the coming weeks,” said the co-CEOs in a memo to staffers Monday (read the full memo below).
“These decisions aren’t easy, but they are necessary for us to best position IMG for future growth and success,” added Emanuel and Whitesell Monday. “These changes will allow us to more effectively invest in our future through acquisitions; to re-allocate our resources to high-growth businesses; and ensure we realize our full potential across WME | IMG.”
These are not the first changes that have come to IMG Worldwide since WME acquired it late last December. George Pyne, the president of IMG Sports and Entertainment, left this summer. Ex- CNN and Turner exec Greg D’Alba came on board as president of Global Sales and Marketing in June. As the two companies began the process of melding their two cultures and business, former dick clark productions CEO Mark Shapiro was hired as IMG’s CCO. Layoffs were always expected as part of the acquisition as WME sought to streamline resources and responsibilities – but don’t believe me, let Ari and Patrick tell you:
In the seven months since WME acquired IMG, we’ve been focused on helping this company live up to its potential as the global leader in sports, media and fashion. We’ve worked alongside all of you to consolidate businesses, create new roles, and collaborate across departments in ways that will fundamentally change not just WME | IMG but ultimately our industry. We’ve seen firsthand how hard you’ve all been working to bring these two companies together, and we’re grateful.
As you’ve heard us say, we are incredibly well-positioned for the future. We’ve had a strong start financially, the business is performing well around the world, and our ability to connect, develop, and promote artists, athletes, media and brands is unmatched at a time when our industry has never been stronger.
But to take full advantage of the opportunity that lies ahead, we have to make some tough choices about how we allocate our resources at IMG. In the coming month, we’ll be updating you on some changes in the business that will help ensure we’re all set up to succeed.
As a first step in this process, we will be downsizing three percent of our workforce across IMG in the coming weeks.
These decisions aren’t easy, but they are necessary for us to best position IMG for future growth and success. These changes will allow us to more effectively invest in our future through acquisitions; to re-allocate our resources to high-growth businesses; and ensure we realize our full potential across WME | IMG.
Thank you all in advance for your help through this transition. Changes like these are always difficult, and we appreciate your hard work and dedication.