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Lee-Collier-Charlotte
Business Observer Friday, Apr. 3, 2020 1 month ago

Area media firm announces layoffs, CEO pay cut

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Company’s stock price is down 57% since Feb. 14.

NAPLES — Beasley Media Group, which owns and operates 64 radio stations in 15 large and mid-size U.S. markets, is the latest media company to announce layoffs, furloughs and salary cutbacks due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The Naples-based publicly traded company, which posted $261.5 million in revenue in the last 12 months and has some 850 employees, released a statement on the cutbacks March 31. Shares of the firm (symbol: BBGI) are down at least 57% since Feb. 14, when it was trading at $4 a share. “Our company, like other broadcasters and our clients, is being directly impacted by the recent unanticipated economic downturn due to the coronavirus pandemic,” the release states. “Like so many others in our industry, we must adjust to the new and unforeseeable circumstances we now face.”

Among the reductions:

• A total of 67 positions across the company have been eliminated;

• Furloughs for 18 full-time employees and several part-time employees;

• Reducing hours for all full-time hourly employees from 40 to 36 for the second quarter;

• CEO Caroline Beasley, who earned $1.82 million in base pay in 2018, according to public filings, will take a 20% pay cut in the second quarter;

• All salaried full-time employee wages will be reduced by 10% for the second quarter, respecting existing contractual obligations.

“We anticipate bringing back all furloughed employees at the end of the second quarter or sooner if circumstances permit,” the company says in the statement.

“These are very difficult decisions,” the company adds. “We are confident that the steps we take today will allow us to continue to serve our clients, communities and ensure our company will emerge stronger once the crisis abates.”

 

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