Fair Lanes reorganizes, cuts 60 managerial jobs

January 08, 1993|By David Conn | David Conn,Staff Writer

Fair Lanes Inc., a Hunt Valley-based bowling center operator, said yesterday that a corporate reorganization has left about 60 managers and assistant managers without jobs, but created hiring opportunities for about 200 others.

The company, which runs 112 centers in 18 states and Puerto Rico, said the reorganization would improve customer service by creating five "guest host" positions at each location, responsible for managing various aspects of the operations.

Those guest hosts would report to the 32 new "managing partners," each responsible for three centers rather than the current one location per manager, according to Stephen E. Carley, president and chief executive of the company. Centers in isolated locations would retain individual managers, Mr. Carley explained.

Senior management spent the day yesterday traveling the country to tell employees about the changes, Mr. Carley said in a telephone interview from Phoenix, Ariz.

In Baltimore, Chairman Mac Clayton informed approximately 20 Baltimore-area managers and assistant managers of their terminations. Mr. Carley said another 45 guest host positions would become available at the company's 21 Baltimore-area centers.

The guest hosts would be responsible for technical services, facility appearance, food and beverage service, league bowler development and overall entertainment. All but the technical services job would have full-time, salaried employees, earning as much as $30,000 a year with performance bonuses, Mr. Carley said.

He said the reorganization would result in a net increase in personnel costs, when all hiring was completed. "If we are fully staffed, this is a net investment on our part," he said.

It is the latest in a series of investments the company has made to improve the look and amenities at its centers.

Last summer, Fair Lanes used $10 million of the proceeds of a $138 million debt offering to upgrade most of its centers, according to Mr. Carley. Some centers added family-oriented arcades and food parlors, while others created billiard rooms and bars to attract an older crowd.

Last month, the company signed a deal to place mamma ilardo's pizza franchises in the 33 Baltimore and Washington bowling alleys, and intends to take the pizza chain nationwide. Many of the Fair Lanes centers now also offer T.C.B.Y. yogurt and food from Taco Bell, Subway and Boardwalk Fries.

Privately owned Fair Lanes reports financial results to the Securities and Exchange Commission because of its debt offerings. In the fiscal year that ended June 27, 1992, the company reported a net loss of $1.68 million, in contrast to net income of $1.03 million the year before.

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