’s Television Group plans to cut several hundred jobs, including at the broadcast network’s Burbank headquarters, in an effort to reduce costs at a time when traditional TV networks face huge challenges.
The Disney/ABC Television Group, led by , is in the early stages of planning for the cuts, according to a person familiar with the plan who was unauthorized to discuss it publicly.
Television executives have not determined how many people might lose their jobs, and they hope some of the cuts will be made through attrition and leaving open positions unfilled.
But ABC is expected to target as much as 10% of its annual expenses, although that figure could change as the network goes through the planning process, one source said.
The Wall Street Journal first reported the job cuts.
News of the cost-cutting effort comes just two weeks after ABC’s most prominent hit maker over the last decade, Shonda Rhimes, , leaving behind her home of nearly 15 years — ABC Studios.
Although dramas that Rhimes produces for ABC, including “Grey’s Anatomy,” a planned spin-off of the hospital drama “Scandal,” and “How to Get Away with Murder,” will remain on ABC, the company now is under pressure to nurture a new generation of writer/producers — or strike deals with established producers.
ABC finished the most recent television season in third place in viewers, behind CBS and NBC.
Disney’s television operations have been reeling from dramatic changes in consumer behavior. ESPN went through a major round of layoffs in its 2016 budget, cutting 350 employees, or 4% of its workforce. Earlier this year, the sports media giant in a move to devote fewer resources to reported stories and commentary.
The Disney/ABC Television Group, which includes the ABC broadcast network, the Disney Channel, Freeform channel and television stations, employs about 9,000 people.
Times staff writer Stephen Battaglio contributed to this report.