Regional Phone Company Raises Layoff Target to 2,500
NEW HAVEN, Conn. (AP) _ Southern New England Telecommunications Corp. said Wednesday it will lay off about 2,500 employees over the next two years, 1,000 more than previously announced, in a bid to boost competitiveness.
In July, the company’s Southern New England Telephone Co. unit, which provides local phone service in Connecticut, began facing competition on intrastate toll calls from AT&T, MCI and other carriers.
SNET said it will take a $259 million charge in the fourth quarter to cover the costs of the job reductions and other elements of a major restructuring. The charge will result in a loss for the quarter, the company said.
″The steps we are taking ... are essential to secure our future,″ said chief executive officer Daniel Miglio. ″This is ... a break from the past that positions us in the dynamic, very high-velocity telecommunications business.″
Miglio was elected Wednesday by the board of directors to succeed Walter Monteith Jr. as chairman effective Jan. 1.
The company had laid off only a few dozen employees in its 115-year history prior to announcing last month it would lay off up to 1,500 in early 1994.
The elimination of 2,500 jobs would represent about a 25 percent reduction in SNET’s current work force. Company officials said they determined the number after making comparisons with competitors’ productivity figures.
As part of the reorganization, SNET is decentralizing its operations and establishing eight separate business units to deal directly with its customers.