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Industry buzzes with reports of imminent RIM layoffBy Ryan Noik 28 May 2012 | Categories: news
Some disturbing news for Research in Motion (RIM) has surfaced, with the company apparently about to undergo a major restructuring globally that will see the beleaguered smartphone manufacturer laying off at least 2000 employees in the weeks ahead.
This will reduce the company’s workforce from 16 500 to 14 500 and, according to a report by the Globe and Mail, the layoffs are expected to be implemented by the beginning of June.
All Things D added that all of the company’s divisions, including marketing, sales and legal, will be affected, while apparently, executives aren’t completely safe from the workforce pruning either.
Changes were hinted at back in March, at an earnings call where the company’s new chief executive officer Thorsten Gerhard Heins, indicated a shakeup was afoot. He stated at the time that “following a comprehensive internal review to assess the state of RIM's business, it became clear substantial change is what RIM needs. I am focused on creating long-term value for this company, and I'm committed to do whatever it takes to deliver on that commitment.”
The second clue to the imminent round of layoffs came from that same speech, where Heins pointed out that it was “extremely difficult” for RIM to develop its consumer-oriented, value-added services business “into a profitable value-added services business at this time.”
“As a result, we will be looking at ways to scale back these activities and refocus resources on developing an integrated services offering that leverages RIM's strength, such as BBM, security and manageability,” he said.
To the point
Scaling back operations on any front invariably means cutting down employees, and while this earnings call was given at the end of March, we can’t imagine anyone not reading the writing on the wall at that time.
Despite this, RIM has nonetheless been making headway as well. The company recently announced a strategic partnership with TomTom, following revelations of its revival plans.
It may come as little comfort, but RIM aren’t alone in implementing layoffs. Tech titan HP recently announced that it would be cutting 28 000 positions over the next eighteen months, the company’s largest round of layoffs in 73 years.
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