Commander closes Affinity recruitment business and retrenches staff

Commander closes Affinity recruitment business and retrenches staff

ASX-listed integrator cuts 15 Affinity staff after failing to find a suitable buyer for the IT recruitment business

ASX-listed integrator, Commander (ASX: CDR), will retrench 15 staff after closing its Affinity IT Recruitment subsidiary.

The decision followed Commander's failure to offload the business to a suitable third party, it said in a statement. Affinity IT provided recruitment services to Commander as well as external corporate clients.

Under the new arrangement, five former Affinity staff will be relocated to jobs within Commander's human resources unit to focus on recruitment and staffing internally. The 15 job cuts are mainly in sales and administration.

In an ASX statement, CEO and managing director, Amanda Lacaze, said staff integrated into Commander's internal operations would now look at delivering cost savings to the business.

"A large part of the work undertaken by Affinity was in managing Commander's recruitment requirements. We looked at a transaction and a key part of that was that any party interested in buying the business wanted an agreement with us. This caused us to have a good look at the cost of signing up to an external provider or insourcing," Lacaze said. "We decided that it would be better for us to manage this internally."

She stressed Affinity would finalise current candidate selections and continue managing its existing contractor base until contracts expired. Most of these were short-term.

The decision to sell-off Affinity was part of Commander's broad Turnaround plan to return to profitability and focus on core areas of the business. Earlier this year, the company shed 600 staff and exited the IT hardware reseller business.

Other non-core assets sold to date include network wholesale arm, Unitel, and integration business, Nexon. Lacaze said Commander was now in advanced negotiations to sell-off the next piece of business.

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