Fifty jobs lost as Huntsworth bids to reduce costs

Huntsworth, the marketing and PR group rescued earlier this year by former Shandwick founder Lord Chadlington, has slashed more than 50 jobs.

Huntsworth, the marketing and PR group rescued earlier this year by former Shandwick founder Lord Chadlington, has slashed more than 50 jobs.

Announcing its interim results this week, the company revealed that it had cut the group headcount from 168 to 112 and reduced costs by over pounds 500,000.

Huntsworth's management fell victim to a concert party last August (PRWeek, 8 September), led by Chadlington and former Halifax director Jon Foulds.

In its bid for recovery - having failed to pay a dividend for almost ten years - it has set aside pounds 3m to pay for restructuring costs. This figure covers both redundancy payments for the former board and other staff squeezed out, and the cost of closing its High Wycombe office without a tenant in place to fulfil lease terms.

The company has extended its overdraft with Lloyds TSB to nearly pounds 10m and asked auditors PricewaterhouseCoopers to resign, in preference to Ernst & Young.

In a statement to shareholders, Foulds said the company would in time look to expand overseas but first had to establish core competencies in public affairs, financial and investor relations, healthcare and technology PR.

Foulds and Chadlington have also appointed a group finance director, Phil Culver-Evans, and a business development director, Amanda Hahn Griffiths.



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