Punit Goenka initiates pruning of Zee workforce by 15%

ZEEL said the proposed structure is aimed towards arriving at a cost-effective operational model with speed and agility as the core areas of focus

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Delhi: Zee Entertainment Enterprises said its MD & CEO Punit Goenka has initiated a process of rationalisation of workforce by 15% to prune staff strength across the company.

In a regulatory filing, ZEE Entertainment Enterprises said Goenka has proposed a lean organisation structure to the board with a lateral structure while identifying broadcast, digital, movies and music as core business units.

"In line with his overall strategic approach, the MD & CEO has initiated the process of rationalisation of the workforce by 15%, that will prune the staff strength across the company to arrive at a streamlined team that is sharply focused on the set goals for the future," the company said.

As per ZEEL's annual report for 2022-23, the number of permanent employees on the roll of the company is 3,437.

ZEEL said the proposed structure is aimed towards arriving at a cost-effective operational model with speed and agility as the core areas of focus.

"It will further enable the company to chart higher growth by maintaining a keen eye on performance and profitability, thereby seamlessly executing its strategic priorities as required for a content creation company," the filing said.

The proposed team structure will foster a more collaborative performance-oriented culture, it added.

"In the lateral structure, the MD & CEO has also proposed the elevation of certain team members across businesses, in order to provide them a higher level of responsibilities; besides him assuming direct charge of the critical business verticals leading to cross functional collaboration, quick decision making and higher productivity levels," the company said.

ZEEL, however, said the detailed composition of the new operating structure will be announced after seeking the required approvals and guidance from the board.

"Building a simplified, lateral structure for the company, will ensure that we maintain a sharp focus on performance and profitability as the key growth drivers, and the structure proposed to the board is in line with this core thought. The streamlined team at Zee will maintain a sharper focus on targeting higher levels of productivity to drive growth in order to generate value for all our stakeholders going forward," Goenka said.

ZEEL Chairman R Gopalan said the board has noted Goenka's steps taken to streamline the organisation and the proposed lean structure.

"While the board is in the process of discussing the same, the proposed structure certainly is in line with the strategic guidance provided to the management. The board appreciates the steps taken by the management to enhance the overall performance of the company, reaffirming our faith in the team's ability to drive the company towards its set targets for the future," he added.

ZEEL said the core business units of the proposed structure will include broadcast, digital, movies and music.

The linear business will continue to be a strong growth driver for the company with a vast portfolio of channels across genres, catering to the consumers' every entertainment need, it said, adding the digital business will be a core area of focus combining the best of content and technology to deliver a compelling value proposition for the consumers.

The company further said with an aim to emerge as the leading pan-India film studio, its movies business will continue to play a strategic part of the portfolio, while the focus of the music business will be to fortify its stronghold in the market and further enhance its monetisation avenues through the prism of profitability.

On Tuesday, Goenka had announced to take a 20% cut in his remuneration in line with the larger strategic and frugal approach implemented across the organisation. As per the company's annual report for 2022-23, total remuneration paid to Goenka was Rs 35.07 crore.

Last week, ZEEL announced that it has "pruned" its Technology and Innovation Centre (TIC) staff by about 50% following the guidance of a special committee, which had conducted a critical assessment of its several business verticals.

Though the company did not share the exact number of employees impacted by the move, ZEEL in its latest annual report said, "The centre has over 650 engineers who give us an unparalleled edge in the race to win the digital ecosystem".

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