21 Mar 2009

SOE to lay off engineers

8:34 pm on 21 March 2009

Up to 20 engineers at the state-owned telecommunications company, Kordia, will be laid off in the coming weeks as the business struggles with a lack of demand.

Kordia, formerly known as BCL, manages an extensive telecommunications network as well as television and radio transmission infrastructure and employs 700 staff in New Zealand and Australia.

The chief executive, Geoff Hunt, says the company has just completed two years of investing in the business and now has less need for about a quarter of its 80 engineers.

"There's less engineering work required for our own network. And it's really, really bad timing with this global financial crisis - our reduced demand has coincided with a reduction in demand from other customers."

Mr Hunt says the redundancies are not due to Kordia's substantial debt levels.