Optus slashes 350 jobs; DealsDirect buys TopBuy for $2 million; Shares down on open: Midday Roundup

Optus has confirmed approximately 350 people will lose their jobs over the next few weeks as part of its strategy to streamline processes and increase profitability.

The announcement follows the company’s transformation strategy put in place 18 months ago.

In a statement, Optus said shedding the jobs was necessary in order to improve sustainability and competiveness.

“Optus must continually review its operations to ensure we remain sustainable and competitive in the years ahead,” the statement read. “As a result, we have re-organised our business to drive greater efficiencies and ensure we have the right structure in place to support our customers and business priorities.”

According to the telco, the reorganisation is already seeing benefits through an improved cost base and new products and services. Optus made a net profit of $227 million in its December 2013 quarter, up from $160 million the previous corresponding period.

TopBuy Australia sold for more than $2 million

Online retailer TopBuy Australia has been sold to the parent company of DealsDirect Group for $2.25 million.

TopBuy is an online retailer founded in 2007 by Peter Xie and Michael Xie. Both will stay within senior management after the integration. Mnemon’s DealsDirect Group includes Australia’s largest discount online department store, DealsDirect.

In a statement to the Australian Securities Exchange, Mnemon interim chief executive Michael Rosenbaum said he looked forward to the opportunities the acquisition would bring.

“The integration of TopBuy is expected to deliver significant cost synergies and cross-selling opportunities with DealsDirect,” he said. “This is the first step in our ongoing acquisition strategy with MNZ continuing to look at a range of opportunities in the e-commerce industry.”

Shares down on open

The S&P/ASX200 benchmark was down 4.1 points to 5486.6 at 11:19 AEST. Last night the Dow Jones closed up 0.538%, rising 86.63 points to 16,535.37.

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