Telefonica unveils sweeping staff changes, tower plan  - Mobile World Live

Telefonica unveils sweeping staff changes, tower plan 

11 SEP 2019

Telefonica announced plans to raise funds from its tower assets and confirmed measures to transform the make-up of its Spanish workforce, as it continues efforts to improve its financial position.

In separate statements, the operator group unveiled strategies to increase usage of physical infrastructure assets and offer early retirement to staff over 53 in Spain. It will also embark on a sweeping retraining programme for 6,000 other workers in its home market.

Detailing the infrastructure plan, Telefonica said its 50,000 towers outside of those operated by subsidiary Telxius had the potential to generate €830 million in revenue, depending on lease agreements signed.

The operator expects to begin cashing-in on the towers within 12 months, though it is still assessing the best approach, including whether to bundle the towers into Telxius.

It separately intends to investigate infrastructure sharing agreements similar to those already struck in some of its major markets.

Telefonica said the new strategy was designed to maximise shareholder value, improve its return on investment and make more efficient use of infrastructure.

Staff changes
As rumoured in the Spanish press, Telefonica is set to meet with trade union representatives to discuss measures to transform its workforce, a plan it described as being designed to “adapt it to the challenges of the coming years”.

The strategy involves offering early retirement to those aged over 53 years. The offer will be voluntary and will be on the table for a year. The company did not provide figures on how many employees could be impacted.

Telefonica said the intended changes in the profile of its workforce was due to anticipated increases in digital sales and continued modernisation of its infrastructure. A retraining programme will be offered to more than 6,000 employees and includes options covering security; automation and robotics; analytics; web development; business consulting; and IT.

It expects to spend €1.6 billion before tax on its workforce plan and anticipates cutting costs by €220 million from 2021.

The announcements came as the company continues to cut its debt pile by selling-off assets and reducing operating expenses.

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Chris joined the Mobile World Live team in November 2016 having previously worked at a number of UK media outlets including Trinity Mirror, The Press Association and UK telecoms publication Mobile News. After spending 10 years in journalism, he moved...

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