By Kimberley Donoghue
PBN Web Editor
PAWTUCKET â€“ Hasbro Inc. said Wednesday it is cutting approximately 75 employees by the end of the year and will relocate 70 others from Massachusetts to Rhode Island as part of a reorganization strategy for its global games business.
The company is moving its games marketing and games development employees from East Longmeadow, Mass., to Rhode Island. The related costs will be reported in the companyâ€™s second quarter results in July, Hasbro said, while maintaining its 2011 guidance.
â€śHasbro has the strongest portfolio of games brands in the industry and this is an important move to accelerate our re-imagination of games. However, it is always difficult to make changes that affect our people,â€ť said Brian Goldner, president and CEO.
â€śWe are committed to continuously re-inventing this business and growing it for the long term. This includes maintaining our leadership position in face-to-face board gaming, while also more effectively competing in the broader world of gaming across all platforms,â€ť he said.
Hasbro announced the creation of a â€śCenter of Excellence for Gamesâ€ť in Rhode Island to build on the strategy of â€śre-imagining, re-inventing and re-igniting its core brands.â€ť
Employees being laid off will be offered a severance package, benefits continuation and outplacement services, the company said, while noting that factory and certain corporate service employees will not be affected by the move.
In April, Hasbro was granted up to a $1.63 million tax break by the R.I. Economic Development Corporation if it created 281 local full-time jobs in the state over the next three years.