RIM to cull 2,000 jobs

Dylan Bushell-Embling
26 Jul 2011

Struggling smartphone vendor RIM will cut around 2,000 jobs – roughly 10.5% of its workforce - in a new round of job cuts.

The company revealed it will start notifying employees in North America and “certain other countries” this week, and that after the cutbacks its workforce will be reduced to around 17,000.

RIM cut around 200 jobs in June, after it reported a 10% slump in first-quarter profit, and flagged more layoffs on the horizon.

Its margins and market share are shrinking under increasing pressure from rivals, such as Apple and manufacturers of Android-based devices.

The announcement sent RIM's Nasdaq-listed shares falling 4.44% to $26.67. Even before this slump, the shares had lost around half their value this calendar year.

Financial analysts toldReuters that the cuts will do little to improve RIM's competitive position, warning that changes will need to be made at the top level.

RIM has been under pressure to overhaul its executive structure for some time. The company did yesterday announce some changes, including expanding two roles into COO positions in products and sales as well as operations, and appointing a new global sales managing director.

But the calls for management reform have concentrated on splitting the current co-CEO and co-chairman roles, a move co-chiefs Jim Balsillie and Mike Lazaridis have so far resisted.

News of the cutbacks comes the week after Cisco revealed it would cut 6,500 jobs, or 9% of its full-time staff, in its own cutback program. Nokia likewise announced 7,000 job reductions in April.

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