Hasbro Cuts 10% of Entertainment One Staff After $4 Billion Deal

Hasbro Inc.’s Entertainment One film and TV studio, acquired a little over a year ago for $4 billion, is eliminating 10% of its staff in response to the Covid-19 pandemic and changing viewer habits.

The cuts were announced Tuesday in a memo to staff by the studio, which said it’s been forced to reorganize in part because tech companies are shifting money to their own services and original programming. Entertainment One is known for the “Peppa Pig” and “PJ Masks” children’s shows, which it sells to media outlets.

“The effects of the pandemic have certainly accelerated these seismic changes taking hold across our industry,” the company said. Entertainment One had approximately 1,190 employees in 2019, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

Hasbro has been a driving force in turning toy properties like Transformers into entertainment, but it previously had to license characters to studios to make films. The toymaker’s biggest-ever deal provided TV production and development capabilities, including animated and live-action shows, offering an opportunity to reap more from its franchises.

Shares of Hasbro fell over the past two days after the company forecast a drop in operating cash flow this year. The company projected spending of $675 million to $750 million on animated TV and film content in 2021. Deadline reported on the cuts earlier Tuesday.

©2021 Bloomberg L.P.

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