September 10, 2019 / 10:39 PM / 12 days ago

Fonterra says it is too early to discuss job impact from organisational changes

Sept 11 (Reuters) - Fonterra Co-Operative Group Ltd , the world’s biggest dairy exporter, said on Wednesday that it will make organisational changes but it was too early to say how many jobs may be affected as it shifts focus back home to New Zealand.

Fonterra is reducing its global ambitions after shocking markets with sizable write-downs of some of its overseas assets, and also said it will report its worst annual loss.

“Our new strategy is about being more focused, prioritising New Zealand milk, and being closer to our customers,” a Fonterra representative said in an emailed statement to Reuters.

“That means we will be changing our organisational structure to support our new strategy. It is premature to speculate on where in the organisation these changes may occur or how many roles may be impacted,” Fonterra said in response to questions about any potential job losses.

Fonterra will be cutting jobs, New Zealand media outlet Stuff reported, quoting sources it did not identify. (bit.ly/2UMFmVW)

Last week, Fonterra told employees it was scrapping bonuses and freezing pay hikes of about 7,000 employees. The company also delayed its annual results announcement from Sept. 12 to sometime before the end of the month as it sought more time to finalise its accounts.

It also previously said it will not pay a dividend this year. The company expects to report a full-year loss of about NZ$590 million to NZ$675 million.

New Zealand’s financial regulator is also looking into the company’s write-downs following a complaint from a Fonterra shareholder. (Reporting by Nikhil Kurian Nainan in Bengaluru; editing by Grant McCool)

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