More than 300 — possibly as many as 400 — Fox film and TV employees have accepted buyout offers, part of an effort announced in February to save $250 million. The company declined to comment. But it’s believed to not be planning layoffs at this point. Fox has about 20,000 global employees.
Fox Consumer Products president Jeffrey Godsick left last month to become EVP Worldwide Partnerships for the Sony Motion Picture Group. Fox Searchlight’s Claudia Lewis left in February. Fox Broadcasting marketing EVP Laurel Bernard also accepted a buyout.
In a February 1 announcement of the buyout plan, Fox said that it wants to “ensure our organization remains agile and structured to fully capture the many opportunities ahead of us.”
The company told Wall Street that it always looks for ways to control costs. But CEO James Murdoch also acknowledged in a call with analysts that at the end of 2015 “continued currency movement against us and disappointing commercial results from the film business are simply too significant for us” to hit its financial targets for the fiscal year that ends this month.
The company made offers to virtually all employees in Fox’s film and TV divisions who had been at the company for at least 15 years.
In a note to staffers in February, Fox film boss Jim Gianopulos said that those with “extended tenure” would be offered “an enhanced benefit package if they elect to voluntarily resign from the company effective at the end of May 2016.”
Variety first reported the number of layoffs.