Kuoni announces 400 job cuts

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Swiss travel group to cut CHF 106 million in costs in response to the global economic crisis.

ZURICH - The Switzerland-based travel group Kuoni said on Monday that it would cut up to 400 jobs, about four percent of its global total, through 2012 due to reduced bookings.

Kuoni announced a plan to cut costs up to CHF 106 million (EUR 70 million, USD 96 million) in January and indicated job cuts were likely to manage reduced reservations following the global economic crisis.

The company said recently that bookings for 2009 in value terms were down 24 percent on 15 March compared to those recorded at the same time in 2008.

"The post reductions have nothing to do with the financial crisis but are linked to our cost cutting programme announced in January," a spokesman for the group said Monday.

The cuts are likely to occur through natural departures rather than enforced redundancies.

Chief executive Peter Rothwell in a newspaper interview on Sunday said about 300 to 400 posts would be cut out of 9,800 worldwide.

However, Rothwell told the Sonntagsblick newspaper that more jobs would be cut if the economic crisis upset the balance between turnover and costs.

"It will be essential to keep an eye on the summer," Rothwell said.

Kuoni Group made an annual net profit of CHF 152.1 million in 2008, an increase of 12.1 percent over 2007.

AFP / Expatica

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