Casino operator SkyCity Entertainment Group has revealed that it is planning to layoff even more employees due to the ongoing global economic crisis. The group is preparing for the eventuality of a smaller domestic market once it can resume trade. This, unfortunately, means that at least 700 employees could be facing the axe.
SkyCity briefed shareholders, investors, employees, and the local market earlier this week regarding its efforts to mitigate the continuing destruction caused by current national trade restrictions. The global pandemic required that the group suspend all its casino operations in Mid-March across New Zealand and Australia.
The group expressed that making massive staff cuts was an extremely difficult decision, despite its inevitability. With no alternative solutions in sight, this drastic move seems to be the only one available to ensure the survival of the group.
Just over a month ago; estimated employee layoffs were much more conservative. A maximum of 200 Adelaide-based casino employees were expected to lose their jobs. The group had hoped to avoid making larger job cuts by requesting that its remaining employees accept a 20% drop in their salaries. This measure was only temporarily viable in the face of a steadily worsening economic landscape.
The vast majority of the group’s layoffs will be from the group’s Auckland operations. The casinos in this region have a staff complement of roughly 3,000 employees. Current projections mean that 10% of SkyCity’s Auckland-based casino staff could soon be facing unemployment.
SkyCity CEO, Graeme Stephens, expects the layoff processes to run their course in a matter of “some weeks”. Stephens emphasized that management would do whatever possible to ensure that the layoff processes are as considerate and painless as possible.
SkyCity is gearing up to resume its New Zealand operations within a week, but on a reduced scale and with only a percentage of its previous workforce.