Nokia Siemens Networks, the unprofitable telephone-equipment venture of Nokia Oyj and Siemens AG, would cut 17,000 jobs worldwide in its biggest cull to narrow the gap behind market leader Ericsson AB.
The reduction, equivalent to about 22 per cent of its workforce, will be completed by the end of 2013, when Nokia Siemens aims to cut euro1 billion ($1.3 billion) in annual operating expenses and production costs. Nokia Siemens would focus on mobile broadband and services and plans to divest or “manage for value” units that aren’t central to its focus, Espoo, Finland-based Nokia said on Wednesday.
Nokia Siemens received a cash injection of euro1 billion from its parent companies in September as Jesper Ovesen, the former chief financial officer of TDC A/S, was named to oversee the restructuring as executive chairman. The venture, set up in April 2007 to compete against Ericsson and Chinese rivals such as Huawei Technologies Co., has fallen behind and has been unprofitable in all but one quarter.
“If you look at the last two to three years, it’s become clear that Ericsson and Huawei are quite a long way ahead of the competition,” said Mark Newman, chief research officer at London-based Informa Telecoms & Media.