The 2021 Eurovision venue Rotterdam Ahoy is set to lay off forty percent of its staff due to the impact of the coronavirus and the cancellation of large events throughout the Netherlands according to Dutch public broadcaster NOS.
Rotterdam Ahoy is firing 40 percent of its staff. The sports and halls complex had to close its doors on 13 March due to the coronavirus outbreak. The relaxation of the lockdown and restrictions at the end of June has only provided very limited relief according to venue’s CEO Ms. Jolanda Jansen. She has stated that this measure is necessary to guarantee continuity.
About 270 people work at Rotterdam Ahoy. The dismissal affects a large group of employees with a flexible employment contract, but also people with an expiring contract and permanent employees. A social plan is being drawn up.
Every year, Ahoy receives around 1.5 million visitors at approximately 500 events. Those numbers are by no means achieved this year, while this year should have been a top year with the organization of the Eurovision Song Contest.
Bizar. Nog geen jaar geleden was de blijdschap groot vanwege het binnenhalen van het songfestival. Nu moet Ahoy veertig procent van het personeel ontslaan door de coronacrisis. Ik heb met ze te doen. https://t.co/A4jCTsc859
— Henrik-Willem Hofs (@HWHofs) August 20, 2020
Many events have been moved to next year, including the Eurovision Song Contest, and Ahoy is also working on a number of new events. But none of these make up for this year’s losses. The future remains very uncertain due to the ever changing scenario and COVID-19 measures and restrictions implemented. Due to this very few people can attend large events or musical shows.
Rotterdam Ahoy is not the first major event location to lay off its staff, last month Amsterdam’s RAI Conference Centre laid off 30 per cent of its staff, thus firing 125 of its employees.
The Ziggo Dome and Afas Live and other concert halls, theaters and conference centers have also had to fire their staff.
The Rotterdam Ahoy was set to host the 2020 Eurovision Song Contest last May but the event was cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The 2021 Eurovision Song Contest is scheduled to be held at the Rotterdam Ahoy in Rotterdam on 18, 20, 22 May.