Troubled Photon company Future House axes jobs

Photon company Future House – which was created from the remains of the company’s disastrous Geekdom venture – has made a series of redundancies and may have closed altogether, Mumbrella understands.  

The move comes while Photon Group remains in a trading halt as the company seeks to recapitalise and restructure under its newly arrived CEO Jeremy Philips.

Photon owns a string of Australian agencies including BWM, BMF, Naked, Mark Communications, AdPartners, Be Interactive, Bellamy Hayden and C4.

Photon was founded ten years ago and listed on the ASX in 2004. It now employs more than 5000 staff across 49 companies.

CEO Matt Bailey resigned at the start of the year, with the company claiming that Bailey’s home in Melbourne was too far for him to travel from. He was replaced by Philips, who started on June 1.

Future House’s switchboard rang unanswered when Mumbrella tried to call it earlier today. Sources have claimed that it has been closed, with about 20 jobs immediately lost. The company web site describes Future House as:

“A place where talented brains are nurtured and allowed to develop. We’re making online a better place for everyone to enjoy.”

There are unconfirmed rumours of significant cuts in other Photon companies too.

Since Photon was placed in a trading halt, there has been speculation that it would make major write downs and restructure – partly because it is burdened by the payments due to founders of some of the agencies it purchased during its acquisition spree.

Recent months saw its PR agencies Kinetics and Hotwire merge; a legal action from  a former owner of Photon company iMega; the messy break-up of Geekdom and sale of its get-rich-quick-on-the-internet college Geekversity leading to a $5.5m loss; a 45% drop in profits; and the closure of its social media agency The Population.

Because Photon is in a trading halt, nobody was available for comment.


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