It's Official: Bennett, Coleman Cuts Salaries, No Increments This Year

We reported last week that Bennett, Coleman & Co. Ltd, India’s richest media company that publishes The Times of India, was mulling significant, across-the-board salary cuts. This afternoon, CEO Ravi Dhariwal sent a mail to all employees outlining the difficulties in the economic environment and BCCL’s businesses as well as effecting salary cuts. “Frankly, I have not seen anything like this in my working life,” he wrote.

Measures relating to salaries are as follows. From the email, the full text of which, is below the fold:

a) There will be no salary revision in August this year
b) There will be no TVP* pay out in August this year
c) There will be a roll back of increment for all employees starting March 1, 09. This will be graded, i.e. employees who got a smaller increase will get a lower reduction and the employees who got a higher increase will have a higher reduction of their increment.

*TVP, or target variable pay, is sort of a performance-linked bonus that is part of your total compensation. While it varies from employee to employee at BCCL, we understand that it is typically 12-15% of the total package.

Here are some key excerpts from Dhariwal’s mail:

Actually October was our best month in the history of BCCL in terms of revenue, though our profits were at half the level of what we had originally expected. All because of the higher newsprint costs. At that stage, we thought we will be able to cut more costs and restore the company to its original financial health. Profit is like oxygen