NBC drops 50 West Coast execs

The pink slips have hit the West Coast at NBC. Close to 50 executives have been laid off at NBC's West Coast headquarters as part of parent company General Electric's attempt to trim 10% of its 6,000-person staff.

Roughly eight percent of NBC West Coast's 600 employees have been let go, including executives at NBC Studios, NBC Entertainment and NBC Enterprises, the network's new syndication unit. Most cuts came in promotion, marketing and finance, sources say.

When word of GE's cost-cutting efforts first came down last month, NBC West Coast executives said they had hoped to make most of the cuts in Burbank through attrition-but that wasn't enough. An NBC spokeswoman said, "Over the last several months, NBC has instituted numerous cost-cutting measures in the hope of staying on-course with our overall financial performance. It recently became clear that we had to go beyond belt tightening and take the additional steps of reducing the size of our workforce. The company has tried wherever possible to ease the transition, offering provisions for severance and outplacement counseling. NBC will continue to provide viewers with high-quality, distinctive programs."
- Joe Schlosser