Ireland: Cash-strapped RTÉ plans to spend €350,000 on hotels for 'celebrities' appearing on shows - - PressFrom - United Kingdom
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Ireland Cash-strapped RTÉ plans to spend €350,000 on hotels for 'celebrities' appearing on shows

12:25  29 october  2019
12:25  29 october  2019 Source:   independent.ie

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RTÉ is planning to spend € 350 , 000 on upmarket hotel rooms for celebrities and contributors over the next two years. The cash - strapped state broadcaster paid for about 1,150 bookings at four and five-star hotels in 2018, during which it recorded a net deficit of € 13 million.

CASH - strapped RTE is planning to spend € 350 k on upmarket hotel accommodation for use by ‘ celebs and contributors’. The estimated value of the contract is € 350 , 000 plus VAT. Tender documents show RTE intends to create a limited panel of hotel groups or individual hotels that will

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Cash-strapped RTÉ is planning to spend €350,000 on upmarket hotel accommodation for use by "celebrities" and contributors over the next two years.

The State broadcaster splashed out for approximately 1,150 bookings at four and five-star hotels in 2018, during which it recorded a net deficit of €13m.

It is now seeking tenders from quality accommodation providers to meet its requirements for the next two years. The estimated value of the contract is €350,000 plus VAT.

Tender documents show that RTÉ intends to create a limited panel of hotel groups or individual hotels that will provide four and five-star accommodation over the 24-month period.

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In addition to "celebrities and contributors accommodation", the hotels may also be required to provide conference-room facilities, concert venues or accommodation for travelling staff.

The tender notes that hotels included on the panel will be expected to work with RTÉ on other projects, including advertisements, competitions and sponsorships; although "this is not the primary purpose of the partnership group".

No alcoholic drinks or bar items are to be charged to the broadcaster under terms of the tender.

The contract is expected to be awarded to bidders in mid-December.

RTÉ is currently in the process of reviewing its spending after reporting a net deficit of €13m for 2018 - its seventh annual deficit in the past 10 years. Director-general Dee Forbes has warned that cuts should be expected.

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"With commercial revenues and public funding both significantly below what is needed to operate the organisation in its current form, our current financial situation is not like anything we have seen before," she said recently.

Next month, five artworks owned by RTÉ with an estimated value of €450,000 are expected to be auctioned in London by Sotheby's as the broadcaster seeks to reduce its budgetary deficit.

"As part of RTÉ's ongoing management of its cost base and its commitment to delivering value for money, RTÉ has tendered for the delivery of hotel services on a value-for-money basis to meet core RTÉ production requirements," a spokesperson said.

"These include the provision of hotel accommodation for a large number of contributors to live programming across RTÉ television and radio programming throughout the year, as well as for guest musicians required for live performances, including those by RTÉ orchestras.

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"This tender will help maintain stability in the management of RTÉ's cost base at a time when there is inflationary pressure on these costs," he added.

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