Britain's Carlton TV Sheds 14% of Staff, Freezes Pay

31 December 2002

Spare no tears for Michael Green, chairman of ailing commercial television giant Carlton Communications, which under Green’s leadership has posted losses and falling profits over the past two years (including a £188.5 million write-off on the ITV Digital joint venture with Granada Media).

In the face of this Green has nobly pegged his remuneration at its current level of £670,000 ($1.08m; €1.03m). Although he, together with outgoing chief executive Gerry Murphy and finance director Paul Murray, were contractually entitled to annual bonuses of up to 100% of salary, diplomacy (and perhaps a word from major investors) prevailed. According to the annual report the trio had “waived any bonuses they earned under the scheme”.

But tears a-plenty are in order for around five hundred Carlton staff – fourteen per cent of its workforce – who lost their jobs over the past year as the group struggled to cut costs in atonement for management arrogance and ineptitude. And more jobs are likely to go on the line as the group prepares for its planned merger with Granada.

The pay freeze and job cuts are revealed in Carlton’s annual report. For the year to September 30, the group posted a profit on continuing operations of £32.3m (versus £39.6m loss last year) before the £188.5m loss on "discontinued operations" (ITV Digital).

Data sourced from: Financial Times; additional content by WARC staff