Blazersedge has learned that the Portland Trail Blazers executed another round of layoffs on Thursday, the third round of job cuts during president Chris McGowan's first year with the organization.
Back in April, the Blazers decided not to renew their agreement with AEG to manage the Rose Garden and opted to replace Ovations Food Services with Levy Restaurants as the facility's food and beverage service provider.
AEG was then forced to officially lay off 900 Rose Quarter employees, however a Blazers spokesperson said that a "vast majority" would be hired back by the Blazers, who plan to self-operate the Rose Garden.
This week's layoffs are related to the new Rose Garden management plans, according to a statement from the organization.
As announced previously, we are bringing management of the Rose Garden Arena in-house this summer, which creates opportunities for efficiencies and more effective operation of the combined Trail Blazers/Rose Garden enterprise. The staff reductions today reflect our analysis of these opportunities as well as the operational insight our management team has gained while running this business over the past season. We believe that we are now well-positioned for success and have no plans for further strategic reductions in staff.
A total of 15 full-time employees were affected - nine (9) from the Trail Blazers business operations; and six (6) from the Rose Garden staff.
The Blazers previously executed a round of executive layoffs back in December 2012 and followed that with a second round of layoffs in January. McGowan, who joined the Blazers last October, said at the time that it was to be the organization's "second and final" round of layoffs. Three long-time front office executives lost their jobs in round one and seven positions were eliminated in January's cuts.
Back in March, McGowan made it sound like the job cuts were a thing of the past.
"I've tried to put (the layoffs) out of my mind," McGowan says. "It's one of those things that's not pleasant to do. I'm focused on running the Trail Blazers in an efficient manner. It is a business, and I want to make sure if we have people working, they're in a good role and they're needed.
"I identified some areas where we're not operating that way. I want to correct it so we can invest in areas we need to. When you're a CEO and president, you have to be conscious of the reality. There's no company out there that's not having to do more things with less. I observed there were some areas that had some bloat. I wanted to get it done with to put the organization at ease."
The first round of layoffs followed the resignation of former COO Sarah Mensah in November 2012, the resignation of top lawyer, Mike Fennell in October 2012, the resignation of former president Larry Miller in July 2012, and the resignation of Senior VP J.E. Isaac in June 2011.
The Blazers parted ways with trainer Jay Jensen earlier this month.
-- Ben Golliver | firstname.lastname@example.org | Twitter