CNN says roughly 100 employees have accepted voluntary buyouts a month after an overhaul by parent company AT&T.
According to Deadline, AT&T’s decision to offer buyouts, similar to those offered at HBO and the remnants of Turner, was in an effort to chip away at approximately $170 billion in outstanding debt, which AT&T agreed to take on as a result of their acquisition of Time Warner announced in 2016. In March, AT&T restructured the majority of their TV assets under the umbrella of WarnerMedia, including CNN.
“There’s a rumor making the rounds today about big impending layoffs at CNN,” Stelter tweeted Monday evening. “A CNN spokeswoman is knocking it down on the record: ‘No layoffs.’ There WERE voluntary buyouts throughout the organization, and about 100 people opted for it.”
WarnerMedia and CNN claim there have been no layoffs and the only exits from the company have been through the buyout process, although it is unclear if the program has a threshold of participants to prevent layoffs.
The buyouts also coincide with the first official broadcast of CNN from their new home base at 30 Hudson Yards in New York. CNN’s move to the new location consolidates almost all of WarnerMedia together in a single building.