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Randstad announces planned headcount reductions in France

Randstad announces planned headcount reductions in France

Randstad Holding nv, the worlds second largest HR services provider, announces plans to further align the cost base in France to current difficult market circumstances. Today we informed our French Works Councils that we plan to reduce headcount by 489 full time equivalents (FTEs). We plan to close 85 branches to optimize our network. The expected savings amount to a little over 25 million on an annual basis and the investment - associated with this plan - amounts to 25 million as well, for which a provision will be taken. A number of our clients have taken drastic measures to face the current difficult market circumstances. says Ben Noteboom, CEO Randstad Holding. While we are a very resilient company, we are not immune to these movements. And while we are stronger today than before, as a result of combining our business in France, these measures cannot be avoided. We very much regret that we have to let valuable and well-regarded employees go. Because our markets still have excellent growth prospects in the longer term, we have been as careful as possible to also maintain our commercial opportunities. This will ensure that we remain able to benefit from those growth opportunities that present themselves, for the market and for our people. In November 2008 we received approval to merge Randstad France and VediorBis, which leads to the closure of 72 branches in Q1 2009. The new plan consists of 85 branch closures on top of the merger plan. Around 100 FTEs out of the 489 FTEs and 5 million of the savings are part of the initial synergies that will be brought forward. The 85 branches will be merged into branches nearby, enabling us not to leave any geographic areas. The provision of 25 million for the plan is not related to the general restructuring provision for various countries (ex. France) of 10-15 million that we announced in November 2008. Our management in France is committed to continue the social dialogue with trade unions and the French Works Councils. On this basis we plan to start the implementation of the new plan mid 2009.

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