R.H. Donnelley Corp. to lay off 46 in Sullivan County

Rick Wagner • Oct 6, 2008 at 12:00 AM

BRISTOL, Tenn. — R.H. Donnelley Corp. is laying off 46 employees in Sullivan County effective Friday, according to the state of Tennessee and a company spokesman.

The affected employees work out of the Donnelley operation in Bristol, Tenn., and will reduce employment there by more than one-third, according to company spokesman Mike Truell.

A Monday morning report from the Tennessee Department of Labor and Workforce Development indicates Donnelly — which publishes yellow pages and is an online local search known as Dex — notified the state of the layoffs Sept. 30.

“We are going to reduce our work force in graphics and publishing areas in Bristol,” Truell, director of external communications for Donnelly, said Monday afternoon from company headquarters in Cary, N.C. “We notified the employees of the changes this morning.”

Donnelley has more than 4,400 employees operating in 28 states. It has more than 600 directories, online city guides and search Web sites, according to its corporate Web site, www.rhd.com.

Truell said the company employs about 120 people in Bristol, which means about 74 will remain after Friday. He said those laid off work on graphics and advertising production for the print yellow pages and the online Dex search engine. The operation is at 1615 Bluff City Highway.

Truell said the ad sales positions at the Johnson City Donnelley operation were not affected by the layoffs.

“That’s the only thing I know of in that office,” Truell said when asked about further layoffs. “This is part of a larger effort we have to contain costs.”

Donnelley announced in 2002 it was purchasing the yellow pages operation of Sprint, which later spun off its local phone operation as Embarq. It once had an operation in Blountville, which it took over from Sprint.

The Donnelley layoffs were among 12 employers laying off 1,106 people reported statewide from Sept. 29 to Oct. 6. Of those, 720 were in the greater Nashville area, all but 53 in Metropolitan Davidson County.

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