Greece’s OTE encourages employees to retire early

Greece’s largest operator OTE has announced it is embarking on a programme of voluntary retirement. OTE’s Board of Directors has approved a scheme to begin talks with labour unions to encourage employees who are close to their retirement age to leave the firm.

The operator is reportedly looking to encourage up to 1,800 employees to leave, representing approximately one-fifth of its total workforce. OTE has embarked on similar, smaller-scale voluntary retirement schemes every year for the past seven years.

“We are stepping up the pace of our transformation, as witnessed by our latest voluntary exit scheme,” said CEO and chairman Michael Tsamaz. “[This] will significantly and durably reduce our cost structure as well as enable us to rejuvenate our workforce.”

The firm added that the key terms and conditions of the scheme will be communicated to employees within the next days. The relative cost of the measure will be estimated by taking into account employees’ response to the scheme once it has been communicated. It will be charged to the 2012 year-end financial results.

The firm also announced its third-quarter results. Revenues were down 10.2 per cent year on year to €1.18bn, which the firm attributed to the economic climate in Greece as well as cuts to termination rates in many of the markets OTE operates in. Net profit, however, improved 4.4 per cent to €109m.

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