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Job cuts in IBM India hit the nation hard

Posted: 19 Feb 2014     Print Version  Bookmark and Share

Keywords:IBM  layoff  Lenovo  x86 server 

CFO Martin Schroeter told analysts in a conference call last month after the company reported its Q4 decline in sales that the hardware business, which sells mainframes, servers, storage and related gear, was facing difficulties and would see job cuts.

Currently the talk among recruitment experts is that IBM may be targeting up to 2,000 job cuts in India though nobody is confirming this figure yet.

The restructuring process, which would see as many as 15,000 jobs being cut globally, including India, Brazil and the European region.

"The estimate of jobs cut globally is 15,000," international coordinator at the Alliance@IBM (official IBM employees union) Lee Conrad told an Indian news agency, PTI.

Similar cuts are happening in Brazil, according to WRAL Techwire, which reported that an IBMer reached out directly to the website after reading reports about layoffs in India.

The same thing is happening in Brazil and the story needs to be told, the worker said.

"So far the numbers are close to 450 this time," the worker who asked not to be identified said. Major cuts also were made in Brazil last year as part of a work force reduction.

Alliance@IBM, which is seeking to unionize North American workers, said Thursday afternoon that some 1,500 layoffs are expected in Brazil.

Lee Conrad, who heads up Alliance@IBM and is a retired IBM worker, had predicted earlier this week that layoffs would start in Europe as soon as the company, unions and governments were able to strike agreements. Unlike the U.S., he said, many EU countries are very strict when allowing corporate cuts.

On the Alliance@IBM website Thursday, posts noted possible layoffs in the works in Australia and Germany.

The tech website stated that the latest "rebalancing" of Big Blue is heading west, with the first reports of job losses in the U.S. coming from New York. There, a "few" contractors have been "walked out."

Speculation has been that layoffs in the U.S. would begin either Feb. 19 or Feb. 26.

"Reports from Europe and South America are also coming in. In Europe, due to union contracts, the targeted cuts must be negotiated," Alliance noted in an update. "Some cuts will be voluntary."

Interestingly, the reductions in Italy include 60 workers who sources there say are "being moved out to Lenovo."

Lenovo is in the process of buying IBM's x86 server business, which is part of the STG group. About 2,000 IBMers in Research Triangle Park are expected to be transferred to Lenovo, which operates its executive headquarters in Morrisville. The total is around 7,500 worldwide.

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