Wyndham Hotels & Resorts announced plans Monday to lay off or reduce pay for nearly half its 2,500 corporate payroll staff worldwide in response to the negative impacts resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic. Under this plan, the company plans to eliminate approximately 270 positions.
Wyndham said it expects to incur pretax charges of approximately $15 million to $18 million in connection with this action, primarily from future cash expenditures for the payment of severance and related benefits costs. It expects the initiative to be substantially complete in the second quarter and that annual savings realized will be approximately $30 million.
As part of the company’s cost-reduction measures, President/CEO Geoffrey Ballotti agreed to forgo 100 percent of his 2020 base compensation, effective April 1. Likewise, non-employee directors serving on the company’s board will forgo the cash-based portions of their 2020 annual retainer and committee chair and membership fees indefinitely. In both cases, the reductions will be effective until such time as the company’s corporate governance committee determines otherwise in light of the COVID-19 pandemic.
On Monday, Wyndham also announced Tom Barber would leave his role as global chief development officer, effective April 1. The chief development officer for North America will now report directly to Ballotti and development leaders for the company’s international regions will report to their respective regional presidents.
Wyndham Hotels & Resorts’ network consists of approximately 9,300 hotels with more than 831,000 rooms.