|NSN Job Cuts in Finland & Germany|
<< The protected and highly unionized Munich and Finland has not been affected by job cuts so far. Only the periphery has taken the brunt of it. Now time to talk with the unions and get rid of the dead wood. >>
>> Nokia Siemens to cut 2,900 jobs in Germany & 1,200 in Finland
The Economic Times
31 Jan, 2012
Finnish-German telecom equipment maker Nokia Siemens Networks (NSN) said on Tuesday a previously announced restructuring plan would entail 2,900 job cuts in Germany and 1,200 in Finland.
The company said it had begun talks with local representatives aimed at reducing the number of employees in eight European countries, as part of its November 23 announcement that it was slashing 17,000 jobs.
"The discussions concern 1,200 out of 6,900 employees in Finland and 2,900 out of 9,100 in Germany," a company spokesman told AFP, confirming that employee representatives had been informed of the proposed cuts on Tuesday.
NSN worker representatives were also due to receive official information of the staff restructuring in Belgium, Denmark, the Netherlands, Poland, Spain and Britain, the spokesman added.
In November, NSN, which had 74,000 employees worldwide, announced plans to reduce its global workforce by approximately 17,000 by the end of 2013, adding that its restructuring plan was aimed at cutting annual costs by one billion euros ($1.3 billion) compared to 2011 outlays.
"These planned reductions are regrettable but necessary, and it is our goal to make them in a fair and responsible way, providing the support we can to employees and communities," NSN chief executive Rajeev Suri said in a company statement when the cuts were first announced in November.
In Finland, NSN said in a statement that official negotiations were scheduled to begin on February 8, and that employee retraining, job re-assignment and entrepreneurship support programmes would be introduced to help cushion the blow of the planned retrenchments.
Analysts said all European vendors will have to make big cost cuts and look at consolidating to stay in business. "The cost of a Swedish, German or Finish engineer is an order of magnitude higher than a Chinese one, this makes the threat from a rampant competitor like Huawei a very daunting prospect," said Ben Wood, head of research at CCS Insight.
John Strand, founder of Danish mobile consultancy Strand Consult, agreed, adding: "This industry needs consolidation."
The 2,900 cuts in Germany equate to roughly every third Nokia Siemens' job in the country, causing uproar among unions. "We will fight with the employees against this job cull. Our target is to save as many jobs as possible with a collective labour agreement and to avoid the close-down of Munich plant," said union official Michael Leppel.
The Finnish economics ministry said the timing of job cuts was problematic as Nokia itself is in the midst cutting thousands of jobs. "For the Finnish economy the situation is challenging," it said in a statement.
The telecoms equipment industry saw a recovery in 2010-2011, but in late 2011 demand slumped again as operators put a lid on spending, hitting earnings of all top vendors, including Ericsson and Alcatel-Lucent.
Alcatel-Lucent, which is in the similar position to Nokia Siemens, has ruled out large job cuts. ###
- Eric -