Telem Group’s restructuring may not start until 2012

POSTED: 09/17/11 3:26 PM

St. Maarten – The placement of staffers in the new corporate structure at the Telem Group will not happen before the end of October, when ongoing projects are rounded off. Prime Minister Sarah Wescot-Williams and the company’s employees were informed of this latest development in separate meetings on Tuesday and Wednesday.

Staff meeting

Chief Financial Officer of the Telem Group Helma Etnel did not commit to a date for starting the placement in her meeting with the staff, but she did promise that it would not happen in December so that people who lose their job will not be impacted too severely.

The detailed elements of Etnel’s presentation to the staffers focused on the new corporate structure, the implementation timelines for specific actions and how the company’s corporate support services and finance division would look after restructuring. There was also a pledge to stick to the company’s Collective Labour Agreement (CLA) and the Transition Agreement signed with the St. Maarten Communication Union (SMCU). Both documents call for all employees to be treated fairly as the restructuring moves forward. Chief Technical Officer Eldert Louisa chipped in with details on how company’s Technical Division would look after the restructuring and the Chief Commercial Officer Brian Mingo outlined how the Commercial Division would look post restructuring.

Staffers at the meeting were able to make suggestions and ask questions to clarify matters after the presentations. The option for them to continue asking questions remains open to each employee so that they can fully understand what is happening at each stage of the restructuring process. There are plans to have workshops to present the restructuring actions and processes in greater detail to separate groups within the company.

“The information presented to staff was sensitive and potentially emotive, but restructuring for TelEm Group is now a reality that we have deal with so that we can move on,” Etnel said in a press release.

Wednesday’s meeting also allowed managers and project managers presenting updates on their progress in a changed format to the staff meetings. There was also a team building exercise organized by Executive Assistant Gerta Hodge

“I would like to thank staff for a very successful General Meeting, especially those who contributed at very short notice,” Etnel added.

Shareholder briefing

Prime Minister Sarah Wescot-Williams, who is Shareholder Representative for Telem, got her briefing on the restructuring on Tuesday during a meeting with the Supervisory Board of Directors and the management. That gathering also covered the process to select a strategic partner.

“Both are progressing well, with the focus on employee consultation and restructuring of the corporate culture. The partner selection is approaching the final stages, namely determination of the most suitable partner and an advice to the shareholder. I was also pleased to hear from the company representatives about initiatives that the company has embarked upon to stay in and even get ahead of the game,” the prime minister stated in a press release.

The board also announced in the meeting that they intend to call a shareholder meeting soon so the annual accounts from 2008 to 2010 can be handled.


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