MTV Networks Asia Pacific is on the verge of a wide-ranging restructuring across the region that could see upward of 100 job losses in its Singapore head office, including president Nigel Robbins, acc

MTV Networks Asia Pacific is on the verge of a wide-ranging restructuring across the region that could see upward of 100 job losses in its Singapore head office, including president Nigel Robbins, according to sources close to the company.

Robbins was appointed to his current position in December 2005 with a mandate to radically restructure MTV across the region. He replaced long-time head Frank Brown.

Sources say the impending shake-up at MTVNAP is part of a wider restructuring now underway at parent company Viacom in the wake of Tom Freston's ouster as Viacom president/CEO on Sept. 5.

Asked for comment, an MTVNAP spokesperson says, "As a matter of MTV Networks' policy, we do not comment on any rumor or speculation."

However, company sources said that an announcement of the shakeup could be made as soon as Wednesday (Oct. 11).

Sources say the recently-announced appointment of Ian Stewart to the new position of research and planning at MTVNAP, which takes effect Oct. 16, is part of the company's overall restructuring. Stewart was previously global head of trend research at market research firm Synovate's Bangkok office.

In other news, MTVNAP says that it has entered a licensing agreement with Taipei-based media and public relations company Hung Hsing International Enterprise, with effect from Jan. 1.

"The licensee will assume responsibilities for managing day-to-day operations of MTV Mandarin, and they will begin a process to determine implications for the 32 employees of MTV Taiwan LDC, in accordance with Taiwanese employment law," MTVNAP said in a statement.

The move could lead "to some changes in the structure and staffing from MTV Mandarin," the statement continued. "MTV Networks Asia Pacific and the licensee are working together to ensure support for the staff throughout this process and a smooth transition that will not affect the television channel's service."

Taipei-based MTV Mandarin is a wholly-owned Mandarin-language programming service of MTVNAP and is available to 5.9 million households in Taiwan.

MTV Networks Japan, which operates as part of Viacom International Japan, will not be affected by the changes, according to insiders.

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