Science - September 2, 2004

ASG sinks further into the red

The Animal Sciences Group now expects to make a loss of eight million euros this year, over three million more than was originally estimated.

The extra loss is due to fewer orders than expected from the private sector. These are necessary as the group now receives fewer subsidies from the ministry of agriculture. According to an article by Dick Pouwels in an internal newsletter of ASG, the lack of private orders is not only due to the current recession. Pouwels suggests that ASG lacks expertise in market-oriented research. In order to stop the deficit from growing further ASG has declared a job stop for the entire sciences group except the university part. The number of full-time jobs declined in the first six months of 2004 from 1011 to 965 in the sciences group. A spending ban has also been introduced: all expenditures have to be approved by the division head. And there are plans to focus on research that is in demand from the market. Smaller measures include turning lights out in unused rooms, using both sides of paper for printing, and limiting mobile phone calls. /GvH

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