Henderson Land Development became the first blue-chip developer to cut jobs in response to falling sales and poor market conditions. Staff in the sales and marketing departments received letters of termination last week in the first round of lay-offs. It is believed more than 100 jobs were cut. The company employs about 5,000 workers. General manager Augustine Wong Ho-ming would not respond directly to reports Henderson was cutting jobs. After yesterday's public land auction, Mr Wong said it was natural that some senior employees would leave the company or request early retirement. Sources close to the company said most of the lay-offs were in the sales department where sales activity had fallen substantially over the past 12 months. This year Henderson Land was responsible for the marketing of only a handful of residential developments. Larger-scale developments such as the Royal Peninsula in Hung Hom, Park Central in Tseung Kwan O and Sereno Verde in Yuen Long were launched by partners. Projects developed solely by Henderson such as Regence Royale in Mid-levels and a Tai Kok Tsui shipyard redevelopment were overhanging for months. Sources said the headcount in the Henderson Land marketing department had also been reduced by about 10 per cent. Some employees were informed last Friday, without receiving double pay. Meanwhile at a separate event, Cheung Kong group chairman Li Ka-shing said that there were no plans for lay-offs or salary cuts in the group. However, Mr Li admitted that any bonus payment would be based upon individual performances.