Tuesday, June 18, 2024

Nation Media Group announces mass layoffs starting June 14

The Nation Media Group (NMG) had announced that it will be sending an unspecified number of its employees home from June 14, 2024.

This has been announced by the media house’s chief executive officer Stephen Gitagama in an internal memo that was addressed to all NMG staff in Kenya.

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“As you are aware, the media landscape is undergoing rapid transformation: Changes in audience consumption habits, technology, and other macro-economic factors have disrupted business models across the world,” Gitagama said.

“We, at the Nation Media Group, have also faced challenges as a result of reduced earnings from traditional platforms, occasioned by these unprecedented disruptions.”

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He added that it had become necessary for the company to trim down its workforce to remain competitive in the market.

“We must evolve into a leaner, and more agile company that will innovate at pace and drive the efficient delivery of services to our customers. This will, unfortunately, necessitate a workforce reduction, effective Friday, June 14, 2024,” said Gitagama.

Those who will be chopped off from the payroll will receive exit benefits as per the stipulated policies, psychosocial support through the company’s counselling service providers, and relocation assistance for colleagues stationed outside of Nairobi.

They will also have their medical cover extended until December 31, 2024, and a negotiated opt-in medical insurance scheme.

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“We are confident that by adapting and embracing these changes, we will emerge as a stronger, more agile, and profitable company,” said Gitagama.

The upcoming sackings are the latest in what has become common practice in Kenya’s media industry over the past few years.

The announcement by Gitagama comes barely four months after a memo that NMG termed as fake and malicious circulated widely on social media claiming that the company was set to fire up to 600 employees.

The fake memo had claimed that the employees would be sent home over what was alleged to be financial troubles and the ongoing digital disruptions in the way news is now consumed in Kenya.

The Nation Media Group attributed the memo to a well coordinated smear campaign.

“The cyber warriors crafted a fake letter alleging that up to 600 NMG employees would be declared redundant by April this year,” the Nation Media Group had said in a February rebuttal.

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