Transat Must Complete "Workforce Reduction Plan" Before Acquisition By Air Canada

Anna Kroupina, Open Jaw

Some 2,000 Transat employees are at risk of losing their jobs, as a clause in the Air Canada acquisition agreement stipulates the tour operator must enact a “workforce reduction plan” before the closing of the transaction.

Air Canada's acquisition of Transat was signed on 10OCT and is subject to regulatory approval.

Transat's Vice-President of Human Resources and Public Affairs, Christophe Hennebelle, told French-language news publication, LaPresse, the clause is linked to an announcement made in Transat's Q3 financial report last month.

In its report, the company indicated it would need to lay off 2,000 workers – or 40% of its workforce – due to the devastating effects of the coronavirus pandemic. 

Hennebelle said the precise number of layoffs has not been confirmed, but "it is certain that there is no scenario where there are no layoffs, unfortunately."

He noted that Air Canada did not exert pressure for Transat to prepare a plan to lay off 2,000 workers and maintained that despite the difficult circumstances, the transaction remained the best avenue for Transat employees.

“It’s a decision by Transat, absolutely,” he insisted. “We believe – and this is one of the reasons we entered into the transaction – that the long-term employment prospects are better with a transaction than without a transaction."

Most of the 2,000 positions at risk of being permanently eliminated are held by employees who have already been laid off. Approximately two-thirds of Transat’s workforce is currently unemployed.

Anna Kroupina

Anna Kroupina Journalist

Anna is OJ's newest member and she joins the team as a writer/reporter. She co-writes the daily news and covers events. Although she's new to the industry, pursuing a career path in travel/tourism has been a goal since her first family road trip to the Florida Keys sparked a desire to discover the world and this exhilarating, fast-paced industry.

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