Astro to let go employees via voluntary separation scheme

Image: James Cridland

Astro Malaysia Holdings Bhd will be letting go of a number of its employees via a voluntary separation scheme (VSS) in light of challenging overall economic landscape, the Malay Mail reports.

Astro said the move would allow the group to further simplify the organisation, enhance operational efficiency and reduce annual operating expenses. To add to that, consumers now are spoilt for choice with a number of streaming and on-demand services like Netflix and iFlix currently being offered locally. 

Recently, Netflix reported record earnings in the third quarter of this year fueled by growth from international markets which accounted for 84% of new customers and constituted 57% of its overall customer base. This quarter, the company expects to sign up 9.4 million new subscribers globally, far above analyst forecasts.

Astro is Malaysia’s biggest direct broadcast satellite pay-TV service provider. The company said the scheme was offered purely on a voluntary basis and had put in place a transition programme that would provide the right support to employees who opt for the VSS, including coaching and training programs.

The media and entertainment industry is currently operating in an environment that is experiencing an unprecedented rate of disruption

Astro

“The media and entertainment industry is currently operating in an environment that is experiencing an unprecedented rate of disruption. Industry players are required to reinvent and adapt swiftly to remain relevant in this new reality,” it said in a statement today.

Chief Executive Officer Designate Henry Tan said competition was relentless in an increasingly borderless and digital world.

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“Astro continues to be proactive to reinvigorate the group to strengthen its position in the market and remain relevant in the years ahead,” he said.

On Bursa Malaysia today, Astro’s share price closed two sen lower at RM1.36 with 6.85 million shares changing hands.