NBCUniversal is cutting about 200 jobs at the DreamWorks Animation campus, the company announced Thursday.
The layoffs come three weeks after parent Comcast completed its $3.8 billion acquisition of the animation company. Jeff Shell, chairman of Universal Filmed Entertainment Group, made the disclosure in a memo to staff, saying that the cuts are focused in the corporate overhead groups as well as distribution and consumer product — “areas where we can fully integrate operations with NBCUniversal.”
“Those who will be impacted by these decisions will be notified this week and many will be working with us over the next several months as a part of the transition,” Shell said.
“These are difficult but necessary moves as we work to integrate our organizations and we will be as generous as possible to those who will be leaving the company,” he added. “We know you will join us in supporting your colleagues during this time of transition and we too will be exploring other opportunities for them and providing career placement counseling to help minimize the impact.”
Comcast announced the deal in late April. Analysts believe that DreamWorks Animation will give Universal added clout in competing with rivals like Disney, Time Warner, and Viacom in competing for kid-and-family audiences.
The DreamWorks Animation brand will remain intact as an imprint and DreamWorks Animation CEO Jeffrey Katzenberg has become chairman of DreamWorks Animation New Media, comprising its ownership stakes in AwesomenessTV and Nova, which will be part of NBCUniversal.
DreamWorks Animation’s second quarter earnings came in above Wall Street’s expectations. Revenue at the company behind “Shrek” and “How to Train Your Dragon” hit $220.9 million, up 29% from the year-ago period.