Job Cuts Begin At RIM

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Troubled BlackBerry maker begins reducing its workforce as part of restructure

RIM has reportedly started the process of laying off employees as part of its plan to save $1 billion (£637.1m) this year.

Reports last month suggested RIM was going to axe 2,000 more jobs as part of efforts to reduce its workforce to 10,000 by early next year.

RIM has endured a difficult year and is currently undergoing a period of restructuring.

Restructuring

The company said in May there would be “significant layoffs” this year, but didn’t say how many would lose their jobs. The company had 16,500 employees in early May, after slashing 2,000 positions last July. An update is expected to be provided when it reports its quarterly financial results on 28 June.

It emerged last month that RIM faces an estimated £661 million writedown on unsold devices, as its stockpiles increased by 18 percent in the last quarter. CEO Thorsten Heins, who replaced former co-CEOs Mike Lazaridis and Jim Balsillie earlier this year, warned that the next few quarters would be financially challenging for the company.

Most of the layoffs are believed to relate to RIM’s older software and manufacturing platforms as the focus shifts to smartphones running the upcoming BlackBerry 10 operating system, which is set to be released later this year.

RIM hopes that the new platform will help it regain some of the market share it has lost to Apple’s iPhone and devices running Google’s Android mobile operating system, as well as repair the damage sustained to its reputation after a worldwide data outage last October.

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