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Hong Kong Broadcaster TVB to Lay Off Dozens

Television Broadcasts (TVB), Hong Kong’s oldest commercial broadcaster, has begun laying off about 100 people as the company moves to become a new-media business.

A source told Variety that the job losses will mostly hit TVBI, the broadcaster’s international arm, though the unit is not loss-making.

TVB’s annual report showed that the company saw a dramatic decline in net profit last year, from $63.7 million in 2016 to $31 million in 2017. Overseas pay-TV operations saw a $6.8 million loss, down 32% from the previous year. But the source said overseas pay-TV is only a small part of TVBI, which also handles licensing and turns a profit.

Layoffs were considered likely as the 51-year-old broadcaster tries to transform itself from a traditional broadcaster into a new-media operation and streamline its resources.

TVB, which had 4,200 employees as of the end of 2017, has launched a range of new digital platforms and OTT services, including myTV SUPER and TVB Anywhere; the social media platform Big Big channel; and the e-commerce platform Big Big shop.

“There is a need to restructure or consolidate some of the departments with adjustment of manpower based on operational needs,” a TVB statement said. “The new structure will help reduce overlapping of functions, enhance flexibility in resources deployment and overall efficiency.”

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