The move is the company’s largest restructuring in thirty years
Bell Canada Enterprises (BCE), the owner of Canadian telco Bell Canada, has announced this week that it will cut 4,800 job to cut costs, with the company reporting “declining legacy phone and news business”.
The job cuts will see roughly 9% of the company’s 44,610 employees laid off at all levels.
The announcement was made in conjunction with its fourth quarter and 2023 full year financial results.
Alongside its financial performance, the company said it was compelled to make the cuts due to the “increasingly unsupportive federal government and regulatory decisions, legacy business declines and a macroeconomic environment with higher interest rates and continued inflation”.
“Today’s changes are difficult, but necessary to respond to evolving external drivers, accelerate our transformation and ensure Bell’s future health and longevity so that we can continue to advance our purpose to advance how Canadians connect with each other and the world,” stated Mirko Bibic, President and CEO of BCE and Bell Canada in a press release of the company’s financials.
The company estimates that the job cuts will bring in “in-year cost savings” of between CAN$150 million ($111 million) and $200 million ($148 million) and will put the company in a better position for future success.
Bell Media is also set to sell 45 of its radio stations – over half of its total – which are no longer deemed viable, according to BCE’s legal chief Robert Malcolmson.
Back in November, Bell announced its intention to cut back on capital expenditure by over $1 billion in 2024–2025 year due to a regulatory decision by the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) to open up the fibre networks run by large operators and set the price that operators can charge for access, in a bid to increase market competition.
“The CRTC decision to unrelentingly pursue wholesale access at the expense of critical network investment [has lead to these cuts],” the company said in November.
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