BBC Studios and Post Production (S&PP) is to axe 123 jobs following the corporation’s decision to move its children’s and sport production departments to Salford.
Overall headcount at the wholly owned subsidiary will fall from 334 to 211 with 72 of the affected staff in scope for TUPE transfer to the company or companies that win the contract to manage post-production for BBC North within its MediaCityUK buildings.
Broadcast understands that the loss of the BBC Sport and BBC Children’s work will see turnover at S&PP reduced from £60m a year to around £40m.
At the same time the company plans to create new roles in its specialist operations - which includes media handling services, grading, archive and restoration - and ‘reconfigure’ its BBC Television Centre operation to focus purely on studios business and post-production services related to live studio work.
This move, along with some minor changes to its studio management team, will result in the net closure of a further 11 posts. Among those affected are editors and assistant editors working on factual programming.
Despite the severity of the cuts, it is not the first time that S&PP has reduced headcount in 2010.
In March S&PP made 44 staff redundant in the final part of an internal reshuffle that saw its resources divided into four sections: Drama Services; Sport and Children’s; Media Solutions; and new business and Entertainment.
Chief executive Mark Thomas said: “The transfer of one third of total revenues would fundamentally impact any business and S&PP is no different. But we have known about this and prepared for it in the changes we have been making to totally reinvent our business. The post closures we have announced are directly related to the BBC’s move of Sport and Children’s departments to Salford, but the three remaining S&PP businesses are all fit for the future and have the potential to grow.”
S&PP met with union representatives from Bectu on Wednesday (1 December) and is already consulting with affected staff. A second meeting with Bectu is planned for two weeks time.
BBC S&PP will continue to supply BBC Children’s and BBC Sport until May 2011.
The award of the contract to provide post-production services to both of those departments - plus BBC Entertainment and BBC Religion - in Salford is due to be announced in the next couple of months. BBC S&PP is understood to be among the companies short-listed.
BBC S&PP was recently awarded a multi-million pound two year contract to support production of Endemol’s Deal or No Deal (pictured).
In 2008, after selling its outside broadcast unit to SIS, BBC Resources employed 735 staff.