Sabre Corp. is cutting more than 900 workers as the travel technology firm reported a $6.5 million second-quarter loss. Khampha Bouaphanh
Sabre Corp. is cutting more than 900 workers as the travel technology firm reported a $6.5 million second-quarter loss. Khampha Bouaphanh

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Sabre Corp. is laying off more than 900 workers

August 01, 2017 10:23 AM

Sabre Corp. is cutting more than 900 jobs, the travel technology firm said Tuesday, including about 300 at its headquarters in Southlake.

The company, which develops software for reservations and operations at airlines and hotels, unveiled the cutbacks as it reported a $6.5 million second-quarter loss. About a third of the company’s 10,000 employees, or more than 3,000, are located in North Texas.

“From time to time we adjust staffing to meet business requirements and opportunities, just like any well-managed company must do,” Sabre said in a statement, noting that the job reductions include some open positions that won’t be filled. “We will continue to hire and grow with a focus on skill sets and needs that reflect business priorities.”

Last year, Sabre expanded to a third building at its headquarters campus, and said it had grown its North Texas headcount by 400 since 2014, when it sold stock to the public.

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Sabre has continually faced challenges as airlines have pushed customers to buy tickets through their websites instead of its global distribution system used by travel agents. It has attempted to diversify by adding hotel property management software suites and desktop software that allow travel agents to sell extra services offered by airlines such as seats with extra legroom.

Sabre has also been fighting a legal battle with American Airlines. A jury awarded American $15 million, saying Sabre violated antitrust laws by forcing airlines to sign contracts that prevented airlines from providing airfares to travel agents through direct connections that did not involve Sabre’s global distribution system. Sabre is appealing the ruling.

Sabre said the layoffs and other cost reduction initiatives will result in $110 million in annual savings in 2018.

Shares of Sabre [ticker: SABR] fell $2.32 a share, or nearly 11 percent, to $19.81 on the Nasdaq stock market. Sabre said its revenues grew 6.6 percent to $900.6 million for the quarter. But the company posted a loss due to a $92 million charge related to a contract for Air Berlin and a $25.5 million charge associated with the layoffs.

Andrea Ahles: 817-390-7631, @Sky_Talk