Dish Network said it is planning to make a “focused” set of layoffs across the company, as it deals with the economic fallout of the coronavirus crisis.
Dish had 16,000 employees as of Dec. 31, 2019, according to SEC filings. The pay-TV company didn’t disclose how many jobs it expected to cut.
In a statement, Dish said, “Due to the current economic climate, combined with changing needs of our customers and how we best serve them, Dish has made the difficult decision to reevaluate our organization.” The No. 2 satellite operator, which also offers the Sling TV over-the-top streaming TV service, said the staff cuts will “align our workforce with the current and future needs of the business.”
Dish CEO Erik Carlson announced the cutbacks in a memo to employees, as first reported by Reuters and confirmed by the company. “The pandemic has forced us to take a closer look at every aspect of our business, at our work volumes, our areas of focus and investments, and the performance of our team members,” Carlson wrote.
The company is specifically looking to “reevaluate parts of our business, particularly within In Home Services,” Carlson said in the memo, referring to the Dish division that handles on-site installation and support at customer locations.
Even before the COVID-19 crisis, Dish has been buffeted by the longer-term cord-cutting trend and struggling to adapt.
For the fourth quarter of 2019, the company lost 94,000 Sling TV over-the-top customers — the first time its OTT service lost subscribers since launching in 2015 — and shed 100,000 satellite TV customers. It ended the year with 9.39 million total satellite TV subscribers at year-end and 2.59 million Sling TV customers.