Associated Press (AP), one of the largest news organizations in the world, is offering buyouts to several hundred veteran employees in a bid to reduce 10 percent of its workforce this year.
According to a News Media Guild statement, the buyouts were first offered on April 29 and AP did not publicize the program outside the organization.
The deadline for accepting is June 22 for technology employees and July 13 for all other U.S.-based employees. To be eligible for the program, the employee must be at least 55 years of age, have at least 10 years of AP service, but the combination of age and years of service must also add up to 75.
The buyout includes a 500-U.S. dollar cash payment for each year of service with AP and a pension payout that is 14 to 16 percent higher than the amount the employee would normally receive.
AP has roughly 3,000 journalists on staff, with a total workforce numbering roughly 4,100 people worldwide. The buyouts are considered as part of AP's restructuring plan, pressured by both falling revenues from its newspaper members and increasing competition from rivals like Reuters and Bloomberg. Last November, AP announced a plan to cut 10 percent of jobs in 2009.