On July 23rd, 2018, Protasco had a group-wide Town hall meeting to update employees on the company’s plans and way forward following the change in government in May 2018.
Amongst the first few initiatives taken by the new cabinet was to reduce national expenditures and debts. Many government infrastructure related projects were delayed or halted. As a one-stop infrastructure solution provider, Protasco is adversely impacted.
At the Town hall meeting, we have shared with you the cost optimisation measures that are expected to deliver short term benefits. It is imperative for us to balance short-term cencerns against long-term objectives to better position Protasco to work with the new government in a new environment.
A more structured approach to cost management is inevitable. Non-performing divisions particularly needed to think beyond short-term cost savings by assessing the underlying business models of Protasco. By focusing on some of the key dimensions of the business, core cost drivers were identified and immediate actions to effectively manage costs were implemented in a more sustainable manner.
The measures to optimize expenditures included reorganization and business restructuring. This action is necessary in order to strengthen business operations in the long run. The focus is to build a leaner and flexible organisation, hence resulting in substantial cost reduction.
As we reach the end of 2018, we have made Protasco group more agile by examining all operating segments and to take necessary actions to make it more cost effective. These include closing down under performing regional offices within the Engineering and Consultancy Services Division, merging identified faculties in the Education Division, and identifying staff redundancy in other divisions. A group-wide initiative offering staff to undertake unpaid leave options referred to as the Voluntary Leave Schemes were also offered.
On behalf of the management, I would like to thank everyone for your cooperation and understanding.
An inextricable feature of a free market economy is its ebb and flow. We have experienced tough times before, like the economic downturn in 1997, and we made it through.
Protasco can and will survive yet another economic wave. Let us lock hands and work together to weather this storm. Let us look forward for a better tomorrow.
From the desk of the GMD
YBhg Dato’ Sri Ir Chong Ket Pen
Executive Vice Chairman / Group Managing Director