Speed Reads

coronavirus fallout

Marriott CEO says coronavirus is more damaging to business than financial crisis, 9/11 combined

The coronavirus pandemic has shaken the travel and hospitality industry.

That's been made evident by Marriott's decision to furlough two-thirds of its 4,000 corporate employees at its headquarters in Bethesda, Maryland, as well as two-thirds of its corporate staff abroad as the hotel company tries to trim payroll, The Wall Street Journal reports. For a period between 60 and 90 days, those furloughed will receive 20 percent of their salaries, while those who stay on will be subject to 20 percent pay cuts and reduced workweeks, a spokeswoman said.

Marriott's CEO Arne Sorenson did not mince words in a video message to employees last week, telling them the company, which has been around for nearly a century, is now in its most devastating period ever as it runs about 75 percent below normal levels. Indeed, he said things are worse for the business than the 2008 financial crisis and the post-9/11 period combined.

Sorenson and board chair Bill Marriott won't receive salaries during the furlough period, and the executive team will take a 50 percent salary cut. Read more at The Wall Street Journal.