New York-bound Bloomberg cuts TV jobs in London


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The Independent Online

The financial media giant founded by New York mayor Michael Bloomberg is slashing up to 100 jobs at its financial television channel in London as production shifts across the Atlantic, The Independent has learned.

A three-week consultation has been launched with Bloomberg Television's 150 staff in London which is set to see around two-thirds lose their jobs and programme hours cut to five from eight currently.

The channel, which poached CNBC's European anchor Guy Johnson earlier this year, is moving most of the transmission to New York, replicating the model of rival CNN, which has only one transmission gallery in Atlanta.

Sources close to the firm said the decision was "not based on the commercial viability" of the channel, which is available in more than 300 million households worldwide as well as to the 315,000 subscribers of the Bloomberg Professional service. But observers said thousands of job cuts in the financial-services sector was likely to be putting wider pressure on the company, which generates billions in revenues from its terminals.

A Bloomberg spokesperson said the channel "remained dedicated" to reporting European stories but added: "Bloomberg Television is reviewing its engineering and back-office production functions to improve operational efficiencies on a global scale... We are firmly committed to the growth of our London and global business and project overall growth in London-based employment over the next year and beyond."

Mr Bloomberg – an 88 per cent shareholder – set up the business more than 30 years ago when he lost his job as a partner at Wall Street investment bank Salomon Brothers, following its takeover by commodities trader Phibro.

The firm has more than 15,000 employees in 192 locations, including 3,000 staff in London.